Although I have been married since 2005, and I have been doing individual and couple counseling since 2003, I still find marriage as a lifelong learning process. Every year, I read at least three marriage books to keep my marriage fresh and to serve the counseling couples with excellence. It amazes me how many couples spend thousands of dollars for the wedding, but do not spend any time to prepare for the marriage. A big chunk of our lives are spent in school from Pre- K to some Post Grad work. Why not invest in the only relationship where you are called to spend the rest of your life?
My pre-marital counseling was a great investment. Even as a marriage counselor, I still see the benefits of my pre-marital counseling for my marriage.
Well, this morning we had an argument and pre-marital counseling came to the rescue again. Honestly, looking back at the situation while I am writing this blog, I came to the conclusion that it could have been prevented. This argument could have been a disaster if it was not for the pre-marital counseling.
I know. Do you really remember what you learned 8 years ago? Honestly, most of the time, no. But the first thing that came to mind was a lesson I learned in pre-marital counseling – Do not let your husband leave the house without reconciliation.
I must confess. I wanted to resist this whole reconciliation thought and defend “my right to be mad” Since the thought persisted, I decided to explore it. In making the exploration, the following questions came to mind. If you are right, who is losing? Are you really sending your husband out in the world to win? How your right to be mad is is helping your marriage?
Needless to say, we reconciled. In analyzing this lesson, I re-discovered four key lessons I learned from pre-marital counseling.
Photo Courtesy of Maria Rosaria Sannino under Flickr Creative Commons
1. When you are angry, think before you speak to your spouse – Honestly, the exact line that was taught to me was – Bite your tongue until you bleed and when you can taste the blood then you can decide if what you are going to say is worth saying. Graphic. Yes. But, this line has saved me from so many arguments. This is my number one filter.
2. Greet each other every morning and every night – This simple gesture set the mood for the day, and it also allow my husband to feel welcome back to his castle.
3. Pray every night – This lesson has allowed me to be so vulnerable in times where I would have stayed silent. This is my number one intimacy growing tip. My spouse can hear about struggles, my victories and my worries. How connecting is that?
4. Have weekly dates – This lesson is dating all over again. So many married couples stop dating after the wedding. A plant without any water will eventually die. Keep your marriage alive.
Marriage is not a destination; it is a process, it is a journey. Get pre-marital counseling and build a great foundation for your marriage. I can tell you pre-marital counseling have save my marriage by allowing me to sweep pebbles out of my house before they become boulders.
Questions: What lesson/s have you learned from pre-marital counseling?
Thank you for reading