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I'm Kayce, the Owner and lead planner for the KR Occasions team. Take a look at some of the behind the scenes of our team, and indsutry tips and tricks we've gathered over the years!

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Premarital counseling offers couples an opportunity to strengthen their relationship, address potential challenges, and build a solid foundation for a healthy and successful marriage. I’m a huge advocate for premarital counseling. It’s easy to get caught up in all the things to do with planning a wedding. Couples often forget the reason for the wedding – marriage and a lifetime together! Taking time to focus on yourself can be greatly beneficial to your relationship. Let’s talk about some benefits of premarital counseling. 

1. Improved Communication Skills

Counseling helps couples enhance their communication skills, teaching them how to express their thoughts and feelings effectively and listen actively to each other. Premarital counseling can sometimes include personality tests, which can help the couple understand why their partner thinks and behaves the way they do.

2. Conflict Resolution

Couples learn constructive ways to handle conflicts and disagreements. Premarital counseling provides tools and strategies for resolving issues healthily and respectfully. The couple will also learn problem-solving skills to help them navigate the challenges that are bound to arise during their lifetime together. This can contribute to a more resilient and adaptable relationship.

3. Clarification of Expectations, Values, and Beliefs

Counseling sessions allow couples to discuss and clarify their expectations about various aspects of married life, such as roles, responsibilities, and future goals. This is a big area of contention with couples. When couples aren’t on the same page, it can lead to major issues. Counseling is a space for couples to talk openly about their expectations, values, beliefs, and priorities to ensure they are aligned. It helps create a foundation for shared values and a common understanding.

premarital counseling for engaged couples

4. Financial Planning

Premarital counseling often includes discussions about financial matters. Finances are a leading reason for divorce. When couples aren’t on the same page about how money should be used, issues can arise. Counseling helps couples establish a budget, set financial goals, and navigate potential challenges related to money.

5. Family Dynamics

Couples can explore the impact of their family backgrounds on their expectations and behaviors. As an example, if one person comes from a family of divorce and the other doesn’t, they may have differing views and expectations around family dynamics. Understanding each other’s family dynamics and history helps in managing potential conflicts. 

This is also a great time to discuss how you’d like your future family to look. How involved do you want extended families to be in your lives? Do you want children? If so, how many? What values and principles do you want to instill in your children? How do you see your careers fitting into your family life? What family traditions do you want to continue or establish? Premarital counseling often brings up questions you haven’t considered or talked about yet.

6. Enhanced Intimacy

Couples can deepen their emotional and physical intimacy through counseling. The process encourages openness and vulnerability, fostering a deeper connection between partners. Through counseling, couples explore and understand each other’s emotions, vulnerabilities, and past experiences. This emotional understanding builds empathy and connection, enhancing the emotional intimacy between partners.

Counselors often guide couples in discussing their expectations regarding physical intimacy, too. This includes understanding each other’s sexual needs, expectations, comfort levels, and concerns.

7. Identify Potential Issues

Counselors can help couples identify potential challenges or red flags early on, allowing them to address these issues proactively before they become more significant problems. These are some examples:

  • Difficulty expressing thoughts and feelings.
  • Misunderstandings and frequent miscommunications.
  • Lack of active listening skills.
  • Disagreements about spending habits or saving.
  • Unhealthy conflict resolution patterns, such as avoidance or escalation.
  • Unspoken or mismatched expectations regarding household chores.
  • Differences in cultural backgrounds impact values and traditions.
  • Balancing individual aspirations with the goals of the relationship.
  • Conflicts related to major life decisions, such as career changes or relocation.
  • Previous trust issues or breaches affecting the relationship.
  • Unspoken expectations about the number of children or parenting roles.
  • Challenges in balancing work, personal time, and quality time as a couple.
  • Unhealthy lifestyle habits impact overall well-being.

couples counseling before wedding

8. Reduced Likelihood of Divorce

Did you know studies suggest that couples who engage in premarital counseling are less likely to divorce? Premarital counseling is designed to provide couples with tools, insights, and strategies to build a strong foundation for a successful and lasting marriage. While it cannot guarantee a marriage will never face challenges, premarital counseling has been connected with a reduced likelihood of divorce.

9. Increased Self-Awareness

Individuals in the couple gain a better understanding of themselves, their needs, and their triggers. Premarital counselors often incorporate reflective exercises to encourage individuals to explore their thoughts, feelings, and values. Then, through facilitated discussions, each person receives feedback from their partners about their strengths and areas for improvement. An external perspective from your partner and the counselor can provide valuable insights contributing to self-awareness.

Couples can also take this time to establish boundaries for themselves and as a couple. Couples learn to respect each other’s boundaries, fostering a sense of mutual respect and autonomy within the marriage. This understanding creates an environment where partners feel safe and respected in the relationship.

10. Support System

The counseling process provides a support system where couples can openly discuss concerns and receive guidance from a trained professional. Counseling sessions provide a safe environment for couples to express their thoughts, concerns, and emotions without judgment. Couples also receive expert advice and a third-party opinion on issues in the relationship. The structured discussions hit potential issues that could come up in the marriage. 

By providing this support system, premarital counseling helps couples build a solid foundation, navigate potential challenges, and enter marriage with the tools and understanding needed for a successful partnership. The support received during premarital counseling contributes to a healthier and more resilient relationship. I know couples who still meet with their premarital counselor regularly as a relationship check-in. I think that’s a great idea! 

Counseling provides a structured environment for couples to discuss important topics that may not have come up naturally. This helps lay a strong foundation for a successful marriage. I always recommend couples participate in premarital counseling. Sometimes, the discussions can be uncomfortable or difficult, but it’s much easier to discuss now versus later. Ask for premarital counseling recommendations, ask a pastor at your church, or search for one near you. Counseling is worth the investment!

About KR Occasions

Kayce is a certified wedding and event planner and the owner and lead planner of KR Occasions. She’s been working in the wedding industry for over a decade. Kayce started as an event planner assistant and soon found herself working for various venues. She launched KR Occasions in 2013 in Sullivan County, NY. While she has planned dozens of weddings, you can expect the utmost professionalism and confidence. She wants to allow every couple to enjoy their wedding day!