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Many times marriage counseling is seen as a last ditch effort. I often hear things such as, “this is the last chance,” “if this doesn’t work it is over.” Regularly the presenting problem for couples is quite extreme.

While these are appropriate times for marriage counseling, they are not the only times marriage counseling is important. Here is a list of times that marriage counseling can be helpful, in no particular order.

1. Pre-marriage. Okay, so this is technically not marriage counseling but participating in some type of premarital counseling sets a couple up for success in areas where they may be set up for failure. In premarriage counseling the goal is not to discover a reason not to be married, but to recognize hurdles that could develop into more difficult problems. We have all heard the saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

2. Communication breakdowns. Marriage counseling is an opportunity to learn and sharpen communication skills. A couple does not have to be in the depths, just care enough about knowing their spouse more intimately to enter therapy for this reason.

3. Changing of life stage. Utilizing a trained marriage counselor is not something that comes to mind for many when undergoing a major life change. This could be growing your family, retirement, empty nesting. Having a place to plan out your next step with your spouse can be valuable.

4. In-laws. Early in the marriage it is not only a new spouse to learn but an entirely new family. Being in counseling with your spouse in navigating the best approach to these relationships can be helpful.

All the counselors at Christian Counseling Center have training and experience to help guide couples through all of these reasons for entering therapy.

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Planning on getting married soon? Congrats!

Preparing for a wedding can be an exciting time, it can be busy and a little stressful (especially for the bride) but it leads to one of the most memorable days of your life and that makes it more manageable.

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As important as it is to prepare for the wedding, it is even more important to prepare for the marriage. The wedding lasts a couple hours and is over before you know it, the marriage lasts much longer. So, as much detail and effort that is involved in the wedding should not compare to the preparation for the marriage.

A helpful process is pre-marriage counseling. Most people have heard of pre-marriage counseling, but may not be familiar with what exactly that involves.

Pre-marriage counseling is not someone sitting across from you finding reasons why you should not get married. A counselor’s goal in pre-marriage counseling is helping the couple identify areas that are strengths and areas that could be challenges. These are discovered by a face-to-face interview and possibly a standardized inventory named Prepare/Enrich.

No need to be intimidated about this process, pre-marriage counseling is often fun as the couple gets the opportunity to share their story. They are able to look forward to building a new life with someone they love.

Attending pre-marriage counseling does not mean there is something wrong with your relationship, it means you care about it enough to prepare for it. 

At Christian Counseling Center we are qualified and willing to provide this service. We love working with couples at this point in their relationship.

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