Marriage Preparation and Pre-Marriage Counseling

How do you maintain a loving connection, strong communication and conflict management as a couple? Marriage is a huge, complex, and long term commitment. The truth is no matter how certain you are of the love and devotion in your relationship, you probably have concerns about the high divorce rate in North America. Let’s talk! It can help!

Some faiths such as Judaism or Catholicism offer marriage preparation classes or courses to couples planning to marry in that particular faith. I have begun offering marriage preparation or pre-marriage counseling, grounded in Humanist values of compassion, mutual care and respect. Trained at the University of Toronto in Counseling Psychology (MEd, Registered Psychotherapist (Qu.) with additional training and mentorship by long time social workers, Humanist Officiants and couples counselors, the pre-marriage counseling I offer is designed to help couples better understand what they might expect over the life of a marriage, and facilitate open and honest discussion that ultimately addresses ways to strengthen bonds, communication and conflict solving skills.  My approach is designed to help couples develop shared goals and bridge discrepancies — whether we are talking about money, goals, children, trust, sex, etc. In fact a 16 year study conducted by the University of Toronto, demonstrated that couples who participate in pre-marriage prep classes or counseling such as this resolved or managed conflicts sooner, and more constructively than those who did not participate.

Please know that my approach is not designed to criticize or judge any lifestyle choices nor will there be any pressure on either party to have children. These sessions may be suitable for people planning to marry, considering a long term commitment, wanting to improve their relationship, having communication difficulties or who may be still unsure of their relationship.  I work both with couples and individuals.  I also offer mindfulness, self-care and communication strategies for stress management in the wedding planning stage and for the wedding day.

Marriage prep work is often at least a 6 – 10 session commitment, once a week (or every other week if necessary). However, these may be adapted to suit your particular needs and may be offered via skype to accommodate scheduling and location conflicts – particularly those outside my direct service area. Please contact me for various options.

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