When you choose premarital counseling, you are making the effort to address common marital issues that can disrupt your marriage and lead to divorce. Although the pastor or Christian counselor covers certain areas, you and your partner have the opportunity to discuss your own relationship and future marriage. You can use this opportunity to explore concerns in your relationship and learn how to resolve future issues.
Money issues are among the top indicators of divorce for all couples. Counseling provides a safe and neutral atmosphere to discuss any financial woes you may have been avoiding. For example, you could ask your Christian counselor about the best strategies for truthfully discussing debt. If you are struggling with negative feelings regarding your partner’s debt, you could ask the counselor how to apply your Christian faith to handling this resentment. Premarital counselors may advise you on how to spend as a couple and make united financial choices, according to licensed marriage and family therapist Andrew Engstrom in the Seattle Christian Counseling article “Eight Essential Topics to Cover in Christian Premarital Counseling.”
Knowing whether you and your partner have a similar relationship with God, as well as involvement in church, are important aspects to consider before getting married, as noted by licensed marriage, family and child therapist H. Norman Wright in the book "101 Questions to Ask Before You Get Engaged." You can ask how to determine if you and your partner value religion differently, as well as how these values will affect your marriage. You can also ask how you should pray on this issue.
Raising a Family
Discussing values, such as whether you want to have children and how many you plan to have, are important to help you avoid future marital issues, according to the Family and Children’s Center article “Premarital Counseling Helps Couples Avoid Relationship Problems.” Consider how you plan to raise your children in the Christian faith. Ask your counselor how to best select a home church for your family or discuss how you will discipline your children.
Sexuality and Intimacy
Whether you are abstaining from premarital sex or have already been intimate with each other, sexuality plays a role in your marriage. You might ask your counselor how to prepare for your wedding night or how you can maintain intimacy over the years. Trust and feeling safely accepted are important factors in intimacy, as noted by Engstrom, and you can discuss any issues during counseling sessions. For example, you might question how you can repair any trust issues that stem from a previous infidelity. Due to the personal nature of such questions and discussions, you should agree beforehand on how in-depth you want to go with your counselor.
Based in Chicago, Nicole Nalls has been writing and editing career and education-related articles since 2008. Her articles have appeared in "Venus Zine" magazine, as well as a number of online publications. She holds a Bachelor of Science in sociology from Illinois State University.