Post # 1
I’m hoping this can remain a civilized conversation.
I see a VAST majority of ladies on here who are PRO pre-marital counseling. And it seems a lot with a religious background.
That being said I feel like I am in the minority as I don’t really see the benefit of it overall. I can see how it can be beneficial to a couple who have not been together long. So I’m not necessarily against it, perse.
Anyway, I’m not necessarily looking for a thread with pros vs cons.
Just wondering if there are others on here who feel the same as my husband and I do. I’ve been wondering this for a LONG time and finally got the cajones to start this thread, so don’t disappoint me ladies of WB!
And a poll because we all respond much more candidly in polls. 🙂
Post # 3
We talked about going, but didn’t see the point for us because we will have been living together 3.5 years when we get married. However, sometimes stuff comes up and I think to myself, “Should we go?”. I think it can be a great benefit, if you feel it is necessary. We decided against it because we already have a house and share finances, have talked about kids, frequency of sex, etc. Plus…we made it through his mom passing away early in our relationship so we know we can handle crisis, etc.
It’s not for us, but I believe it can really help some couples. If we didn’t live together and were getting married, you can bet that I would want to do it.
Post # 4
I do not consider myself to be “religious” either, but I am on the opposite side of this debate.
Too many couple think that love will solve all problems and enter into marriage without ever discussing child rearing beliefs, financial management, communication styles etc.
Pre- maritial counselling helps you to recognize and discuss issues that could be a problem for the relationship.
Post # 5
@julies1949: I think there is somewhere in between thinking that love is going to solve everything, and going to a marriage counselor.
i agree that deep discussions are necessary before marriage, but you can discuss kids, finances, communications, etc with each other without going to a counselor.
The thing with my husband and me is that he is guarded with his feelings. We are super close and he can/will talk to me about anything. However, he would be uncomfortable to discuss his deepest feelings in front of a stranger.
Post # 6
We did not see the point, at least for us. We have been together for seven years, lived together for six, and are on the same page regarding children, religion, and finances. We combined finances a long, long time ago. We didn’t see how it would benefit us.
Post # 7
I think counseling helps you to plan and sort out issues that will come up in every marriage. I think it also helps to learn better communication skills and I think if each person is honest during the discussion, it’s hard not to learn something new about the other. I don’t think it is necessary to have a happy marriage but in some ways it’s a shortcut to getting there. We didn’t find it to be exceptionally helpful because we had discussed nearly everything they brought up (because I wanted to make sure we were both walking in with eyes WIDE open) but we did learn some new things about each other and our expectations and better/more efficient commuication.
Our counselors said they had had a few couples cancel the wedding because they realized through the counseling that they weren’t ready and I think that is a good thing.
Post # 8
It seems like it could be useful for people who have never lived together or who haven’t been together for very long. It’s probably not as important for people who have lived together for a while already.
Post # 9
I think the point would be that sometime one doesn’t always think of the things the counselor, who see lots of other married couples, do. But if you have had those discussions anyway, then there is less of a point. Though I would dare to say that there are limited bad outcomes to going, there are couples who do just amazing without it too.
Post # 10
I think almost everyone can benefit from pre marital counseling. There are some questions asked that couples may not have thought of. If anything it can solidfy the decisions you’ve already made for the future.
I don’t see any harm in going, so why not?
Post # 12
I voted beneficial to some, not all. I think both people have to be ‘in to it’ or it won’t be helpful. From our experience, we attended pre-cana and personal couples counseling. We both found the pre-cana useful and a good day…. lots of discussion on various topics thought-provoking. At the same time, we were doing private counseling to work through some issues and learn to resolve conflicts better. That was helpful, as well… but again, because we were both invested. That makes a huge difference! I’m also a (school) counselor, so you know which side of this debate I’m on! 😉
Post # 13
I think it can really depend on who you get for counseling. Ours was a close pastor-friend and he did a personality test that we loved and really helped us. However we only met a few times because he felt that we didn’t really need it because we both came from good homes with parents who modeled good marriages. I do know several couples who have benefited from it because of emotional baggage in their lives; people who have scars from broken families, skewed perceptions on what marriage looks like because of parents/relatives/friends, people who have been sexually abused, etc. Or if one person is a virgin and the other dated a lot and was active, that can have repercussions too. So i think in several cases it’s very helpful. For us it was just eh. We didn’t live together til marriage but I felt like we adjusted just fine without counseling. So iser your point and half agree, but I think in many circumstances it may be needed to deal with fragile issues.
Post # 14
@Lt.Columbo: This, exactly. I don’t think love will solve everything (or even most things), but I also don’t think we’re doomed if we don’t talk this stuff out with a counselor. We’ve read some very thought-provoking books on preparing for marriage, had some loooong discussions, and all without a mediator. My Fiance is like yours, he wouldn’t open up to a stranger and it would essentially be a waste of money. This is why I said beneficial to some, not all.
Post # 15
I think it depends on the couple. Fiance and I did consider it just because sometimes it’s difficult to get him to open up about future plans, and I really wanted to discuss how we’re going to combine finances, manage household responsibilities, things like that. And it seems that wedding planning has the tendency to bring up issues with eachother’s families where having an outsider’s professional view to help you talk it over and figure things out can be extremely helpful.
Post # 16
but I think in many circumstances it may be needed to deal with fragile issues.
Good point, did not think about that one.