The short answer is a resounding YES. Getting married without pre-marriage prep is like starting a business or any important venture without preparing.
Half of all marriages end in divorce and only half of those that endure are truly happy in the long run. Many happy engaged couples assume that they
won't be contributing to these statistics. Some mistakenly believe that having lived together or known each other for a long time will prepare them for
marriage. Surprisingly, research shows that cohabiting couples have no better chance at marriage success than others. If you just wing it and count on
your luck and romantic attachment to make your marriage a success, your odds are only one in four. There is another way.
Most couples just don't realize that good, skill-based pre-marriage education can reduce the risk of divorce by up to thirty percent and lead to a
significantly happier marriage, according to marriage research. It can also reduce the stress of the pre-wedding period. Just a little effort now can make
your odds a whole lot better over the long run. You want to do everything you can to ensure that your dreams of a great marriage and a great life are
Pre-marriage preparation is based on the reality that it's important to strengthen your relationship and prepare constructively for future challenges
and conflicts that everyone will inevitably face at some point in their marriage, now while you have so much fresh positive energy in your relationship.
Don't stick your head in the sand. The research shows that there is a window of opportunity during the year before the wedding and the six months or
so after when couples get the optimum benefit from marriage preparation. Later, under stress, negative habits and relationship patterns may become
established and be much harder to resolve.
Couples now face more demands and have fewer supports than ever before. The typical complex marriage - managing two careers while rearing children
- really requires that couples have very strong, well-established abilities to communicate, resolve issues, maintain mutuality and set goals. Without this
foundation, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by stress and time pressures. Problems can intrude much more easily than most couples realize. As much as
it's important to come to terms with unrealistically positive expectations, those who grew up with divorced or unhappily married parents may find that
they have unacknowledged and unexplored expectations that their marriage, too, may become unhappy. Marriage preparation functions as an
immunization that boosts your capacity to handle potential difficulties. Couples need every advantage to succeed in today's marriages.
What to Look For in Pre-Marriage Preparation
Here's a concise list of seven relationship skill and knowledge areas that research has shown to contribute to the success and endurance of marriage:
· Personalities and families-of-origin
· Conflict resolution
· Intimacy and sexuality
· Long-term goals
Copyright 2007-2012, Stephanie Burchell, PhD, LMFT Dallas, Texas
All rights reserved.
Marriage Counseling Dallas I Couples Therapy I Pre-Marital Counseling I Family Therapy I Life Coach I Psychotherapy
Stephanie Burchell, PhD, LMFT, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, Counselor, Psychotherapist and Life Coach in Dallas, TX provides marriage counseling,
pre-marital counseling and preparation, relationship counseling, life coaching, and individual psychotherapy.
Dallas marriage counseling, couples therapy, premarital preparation, family therapy, divorce, psychotherapy, depression, anxiety, life coach
marriage & couples counseling
stephanie burchell, PhD, LMFT
2317 Routh Street, Ste. C, Dallas, TX 75201
(214) 534 - 6177