Many issues rise to the surface when a relationship moves from dating to engagement. How do the two of you make choices? What are your life goals? What are your expectations about relationships with one another’s family and faith? How to do you work through disagreements?
All of these are very important questions, which oftentimes get overlooked amidst stressful wedding planning. We will work together with you to strengthen your communication, identify areas of growth and current success, and establish a vital foundation for your shared life ahead.
How are the sessions structured?
We work with couples in premarital counseling in a semi-structured format. There are specific topics that are especially useful for couples to cover and skills that we practice together, but we also allow space to work through the issues that are most important for you as a couple. Some folks like more structure, some prefer less. We are comfortable with both and will work with you both to find a structure that feels most useful to you.
The topics we cover include:
Emotional intimacy and connection
Typically, we will work together for eight sessions (2 months).
We take a dual-layered approach:
Skills. This portion of the work is practical and tangible. We work on skills of non-violent communication, problem-solving, connection building, and follow through. Often, these skills are applied directly to wedding planning, apartment or house hunting, and managing your soon to be in-laws.
We might spend a little time or a lot of time in this area, depending on your unique needs as a couple. This portion of our work together will involve making lists and plans, and often some homework to take with you into your week to practice before our next session.
Styles of relating. All our expert therapists are trained in Gottman Method of couples counseling, and through that system's data-driven approach, we will help you disentangle your old styles of relating from what is going in in your present partnership.
When toxic dynamics are at play, we get in too deep and lose our perspective and ability to notice them. We want to help you both get on the same page in recognizing how old dynamics might not be best serving you as a couple.
Once we establish the relationship patterns that are keeping you stuck, we will work together to understand why it is happening, and how to create new, more positive and productive methods of relating that is focused on generosity and understanding.
This is an especially useful tool to cultivate at the outset of your marriage, and one that you will return to for years to come. We want to help you establish positive patterns early!
Relationships with in-laws
Relationships with friends
Career and work-life balance