Premarital Couple Counselling
Marriage brings two different individuals together. When considering marriage, a couple may believe that the love they feel for each other can dissolve their differences and meld them into a perfect couple! ‘Feeling’ love is essential in both courtship and marriage. ‘Knowing’ love, on the other hand, helps couple members manage the demands of marriage and family.
Beyond gender differences, people bring into marriage the effects of their individual experiences: the sense of self—self-identity, how one receives, interprets, makes sense of, and responds to information, and one’s mood, attitudes, and behaviours. This awareness deepens the understanding of the personal and interpersonal style of being, behaving, and relating.
Rather than a resource to be drawn from indefinitely, marriage is an investment that pays dividends only to the investor. The objective of premarital counselling is to help the couple identify areas in each member that could distress the relationship. I work with premarital couples to help them make the necessary changes and develop skills for a fulfilling marriage.
Areas of focus to improve a premarital couple’s potential for fulfilling marriage include:
- Self-identity (i.e., level of individuation and differentiation)
- Significant experiences (e.g., family of origin, critical incidents)
- Self-appraisal (i.e., seeing oneself as worthy, valuable, acceptable, lovable, enjoyable)
- Beliefs (i.e., views about self, others, marriage, family)
- Personality (strengths, challenges, coping styles)
- Optimism (i.e., level of positive expectations)
- Aspirations and goals (self, spouse, marriage, family, occupation)
- Empathy (i.e., ability to share in another’s experience, support, kindness, compassion)
- Responsibility (i.e., initiative, motivation, persistence, commitment)
- Adaptability (i.e., degree of flexibility, ductility, resilience)
- Frustration tolerance (i.e., emotion- regulation, self-regulation, delayed gratification, yielding, patience, altruism)
- Psychiatric and physical conditions (e.g., mental health conditions, chronic conditions)