HFM Christian Counseling Center

a division of Have Faith Ministries, Inc.

Pre-Marital Counseling

Every couple would like to be married till death do them apart, right? Did you know that one in four couples will remain married? Do you know that most affairs and divorces occur during the first couple of years after the wedding? Did you know that living together before the wedding does not increase marriage success? Did you know that pre-marital counseling is one of the most important investments you can make in your relationship?

WHAT IS PRE-MARITAL COUNSELING?

  • Pre-marital counseling is simply the best way to become better prepared for the many challenges you will face in your marital relationship.
  • Pre-marital counseling focuses on developing skills such as communication, handling conflict, solving problems, and making decisions. It also will help you develop the knowledge, attitudes, expectations, and characteristics that are important to creating a satisfying relationship.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF PRE-MARITAL COUNSELING?

  • Pre-marital counseling is designed to deal with the unique challenges you face in your relationship. Most books and seminars are geared towards a large audience and often will not address your direct needs.
  • Pre-marital counseling will help each partner assess his or her personal readiness for marriage.
  • Pre-marital counseling will give you the skills to prevent or to be better able to deal with any difficult habits and unhealthy relationship patterns that can be hard to break once they are well established.

 

"Save Your Marriage Before It Starts"

Aww, the freshness of spring. The newness of flowers. In Thumper’s words from the movie, Bambi, love has everyone twitter-pated. It’s that time of year when the ladies have bought their wedding gowns, the bakeries are setting up their best wedding cakes in the showcases. Everyone is getting ready for their most expensive event of the year: the summer wedding. But amidst all the excitement, do not forget to continue learning about your fiancé’s goals, dreams, and character.

Though the divorce rate has been declining, there are still only 63% of marriages staying together “til death do you part”. It is extremely important to invest time, money, and energy into pre-marital counseling. We, at Total Life Counseling, take your plans of getting married seriously. At Total Life Counseling, we want to see you continue to grow together and have the tools to learn to love each other all over again for the rest of your lives. When looking for a pre-marital course or counselor, make sure he/she is willing to look at every aspect of a marriage and relationship. The following topics are helpful guidelines:

Communication. It is often said that men are clams, and women are like crow bars trying to pry information from their spouse or partner. Or men come from Mars, women are from Venus. Learning how each other communicates is a key to a successful marriage. Learning the tools of how to listen, how to understand different perceptions, knowing how to speak for yourself, and how to let your partner know you understand what they are saying are important keys to learn before entering into a marriage.

Attitudes & Expectations. Most couples have discussed their major goals in life, their dreams and aspirations. But during pre-marital counseling, you will want to discuss each other’s attitudes and expectations concerning work, play, and daily household chores. How do you handle the individual steps to getting to the end result?

Conflict Resolution. All marriages have problems and conflicts. No two people think or feel exactly the same way. Learn how to handle conflicts, be pro-active in handling your anger, and learn techniques that have been successful in fighting fair.
Religious Beliefs. Whether or not you see yourself as religious, it is important to work though your beliefs as individuals and as a couple. How do you see God? Which church will you attend? Will you practice the same beliefs as your extended families?

Finances. It is widely known that the #1 reason for divorce is money issues. Make sure that finances and managing money is part of your pre-marital counseling. Work out a budget and have clear expectations before you enter into marriage. Be aware of any previous debts that each other have accrued.

Sexuality. Be willing and ready to express yourself openly and honestly in counseling. Sexual intimacy is more than just intercourse. Each couple should have the freedom to share, to enjoy, to love, and to learn about their sexual needs and desires prior to beginning their marriage relationship. Any prior abuse or traumas need to be discussed in counseling within a safe environment.

Family Planning & Children. Though children may not be in your near future, it is necessary to discuss your plans and thoughts about starting a family. Communicating your thoughts and attitudes towards children now, before marriage, spares you many problems, misunderstandings, and heartaches after marriage.

Our counselors are available for marriage and pre-marital counseling.

I offer online scheduling using BookFresh

5 Steps to Marital Satisfaction?

  1. Live apart from each other before you marry-A British government study found that couples who lived together before marriage are at least 40 percent more likely to divorce within 15 years of their weddings, and 60 percent more likely to divorce or separate at some point. Similar studies in Canada, Sweden & the U.S. also had similar findings.
  2. No Experience in Bed before Marriage-Several Studies (including the Redbook survey) show that women who engage in early sexual activity and those who have had multiple partners are less apt to express satisfaction with their sex lives than women who entered marriage with little or no sexual baggage. According to the CDC, 80% of women report they regret their first pre-marital sexual encounter and a high percentage report 20 years later when having sex they visualize the first person they had sex with and note it's "anti-climactic."
  3. Marital Commitment-Sex therapist Mary Ann Mayo says this connection is particularly strong for women, since "their sexual responsiveness is greatly affected by the relational context in which lovemaking takes place." Mayo says that a mutual commitment to lifelong marriage not only makes it easier for women to "let themselves go" sexually, but it alsotends to encourage constructive "pillow talk" about sex between spouses.  
  4. Attend Church Together-A University of Chicago study: "Sex in America: The Definitive Survey," found that monogamous conservative Christians reported the most physical satisfaction from sex. Several other studies show that married couples who attend church at least once per week are the most sexually contented segment of society. While sexual fulfillment certainly contributes to marital satisfaction, Mayo says that sexual enjoyment is more commonly a byproduct of a stable, happy union rather than the primary cause of it. Often those who go to church have more access to marriage seminars and couples weekends are a more likely to receive pre-marital counseling. A research review by psychologist Timothy Kelly found that the frequency of church attendance positively affected sexual satisfaction above and beyond one's commitment to traditional sexual morality. Similarly, the Janus Report on Sexual Behavior found the nonreligious "have a tendency to focus on the more technical or physical performance aspects of sex, the religious pay more attention to the mystical and symbolic dimensions of one's sexuality."
  5. Lack of Sexual Anxiety-A UCLA study found that sexual satisfaction is positively affected by "the absence of sexual anxiety." Monogamous spouses do not have the issues of guilt from violating sexual values, and they do not have the fears of STD's or AIDS.
    I offer online scheduling using BookFresh

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