IN CUMMING, GA
You’re engaged and excited, and want to make sure you start your relationship on the right foot. Perhaps you’ve known other couples that started well but then quickly had problems in their relationship…and you want to do all you can to prevent that. Or maybe you’re a parent of someone planning a wedding and want to help them invest in the marriage (instead of just the wedding). Premarital counseling can help!
What is Premarital Counseling?
Premarital counseling is a form of relationship or couples counseling that helps couples build a strong foundation for a satisfying marriage.
Like anything of value, marriage relationships require investment and maintenance to help them flourish through life’s challenges. Premarital counseling helps couples learn to communicate effectively and openly so that they are ready to navigate the challenges and reap the rewards of marriage.
How does premarital counseling help?
Premarital counseling helps each person in the couple identify the strengths they bring to the relationship, as well as the blind spots that could lead to problems down the road. It helps couples communicate more openly about topics that are sometimes difficult to talk about, including:
- Roles in marriage
- Affection and sex
- Expectations about children
- Extended family relationships
- Communication styles
- Conflict resolution
- Spiritual beliefs and practices
How do I know if I/We need Premarital Counseling?
Every couple can benefit from the honest dialogue that premarital counseling can facilitate. If you’re on the fence about whether to invest time and money in premarital counseling, here are some questions to honestly ask yourself and your partner to help you make your decision:
- Have there been any delays in getting engaged that may be an indicator of some tension in the relationship? Has one person expected the relationship to move forward faster than their partner has?
- Are there any ongoing conflicts or issues with extended family in the relationship — future in-laws, parents, siblings, opposite sex friends, etc.? Does talking about these issues often lead to arguments?
- Are there particular topics that you and your partner have a hard time talking about now, like sexual expectations, handling money, interactions with family, etc.?
- Is this a second marriage or will it become a blended family? If so, that brings its own set of challenges that can put stress on a relationship.
- Did either you or your partner come from a family background where there were relationship difficulties? Not just a divorce, but also families where conflicts were either avoided or handled with a lot of anger? Do you come from a family that was either very distant from each other, or so close that people didn’t have their autonomy?
- Do you and your partner come from different religious or spiritual traditions? If so that could be a source of conflict, particularly if there are plans for children.
Importance of Premarital Counseling
Love and attraction are powerful feelings that can sometimes keep us from seeing and addressing dynamics in the relationship that could lead to problems down the road if not addressed. Many of these issues can be discussed, explored and resolved in premarital counseling before they cause problems.
What to expect in premarital counseling
The couple gets to decide how many sessions they attend. To receive the full benefit from premarital counseling, I usually recommend committing to at least five sessions.
I use a tool called the Prepare/Enrich inventory. It’s the most used and researched relationship inventory in the world – over 4 million couples have taken it!
Premarital counseling sessions typically involve the following:
Initial intake session for me to get to know the couple and talk about their goals. During this time I also instruct the couple how to take the Prepare/Enrich inventory.
- Couples take the inventory online (separately).
- At our next session we review the initial results of the inventory and identify where to focus.
- During subsequent sessions we dive into the results of the inventory that would most benefit the couple. This might include conflict resolution, exploration of values related to money, or sexual expectations.
Investing in your relationship through Premarital Counseling
A marriage is the most significant relationship you will ever choose to enter into.
We spend years of our lives and invest thousands of dollars in the investment of formal education and homeownership. And yet the quality of our relationships, especially our most intimate ones, is one of the biggest factors in happiness and well-being. Premarital counseling is one of the best ways to invest in your own well-being, the long-term success of your relationship, and in your future children (or current ones if you are forming a blended family).
Why I am a premarital therapist in Cumming, GA
Many of the couples I work with in marriage counseling state that they wish they had taken action earlier to address relationship difficulties. In fact, research suggests that couples in marriage counseling wait an average of six years after problems show up to get help!
In my own relationship, the counseling my wife and I did before our marriage made such a difference in how we handled the inevitable misunderstandings that have happened in our life together. I want to empower other couples to avoid unnecessary pain by investing in themselves and their relationship.
— Brent Sweitzer, LPC, RPT
Begin Premarital Counseling in Cumming, Alpharetta and Johns Creek, GA
Now is the time to lay the groundwork for a marriage based on communication, intimacy and trust. Premarital counseling will help you communicate better and feel closer. My Cumming counseling office is conveniently located off of 400 and I specialize in improving relationships.
To start your premarital counseling journey, follow these simple steps:
Once you decide to begin counseling, you'll fill out the initial paperwork securely using the client portal. We will meet and begin the therapeutic counseling journey together.
Through your counseling sessions, you will build the foundation for a loving and healthy marriage.
Other Counseling Services at Sweitzer Counseling