Your Marriage Will Take a Lot of Work
Last month I had the honor of officiating a marriage here in Northern Michigan for a wonderful couple. The day was truly amazing with the weather, location and the ceremony. Nevertheless, there is a lot of work to get to “the Day” and the quality of that hard work pays off with the health of the marriage after the ceremony.
When I officiate a wedding, I like to have at least four pre-marriage counseling sessions with the couple (five or six sessions is ideal). During the sessions we will go over various topics, including: Expectations, The In-laws, Communication, Conflict, Money, Sex, Spiritual Growth. I like to have couples work through a series of questions to ask each other. The questions are on various topics that might not come up in our everyday conversations but nonetheless, are very important to know the answers to. I advice the couple to take a week or two and go over the questions over a period of a few days. Maybe schedule two date nights to go over the questions and to ask “follow-up questions” to the answers that are given (this helps their communication skills and to understanding in what each other is saying).
Here are thirty questions that I found over at another blog that every couple (whether they are planning to get married or have been married for several years) can go over with each other.
30 Questions For Every Couple
- How did your parents show their love to you growing up?
- Do you have trust issues and insecurities?
- How will we make decisions together?
- What is your love language?
- If we get stuck in our marriage, are you willing to seek outside help with a counselor?
- How much alone time do you need?
- What are your thoughts about having debt?
- How do we handle conflict and how could we be better about it?
- What are the boundaries we want to put in place when it comes to dealing with the opposite sex?
- What are your expectations about how we will spend our free time?
- Do you feel like we have enough heart to heart conversations that connect us emotionally?
- How do you handle your anger?
- Do you expect or want me to change in certain areas?
- What amount of available money do you need to have to feel comfortable?
- Are we both good at apologizing?
- Are we both quick to forgive?
- What role will your family play in our life together?
- Do we truly listen to each other and fairly consider one another’s ideas and complaints?
- How will we make sure we have quality time together no matter how busy we get?
- What are some of your financial goals?
- What does faith and spirituality mean to you?
- How important is it to you to keep up physical appearances?
- Are there some things that you and I are not prepared to give up in the marriage?
- Do you feel like you can be assertive with me? Why or why not?
- How do we balance holiday and special occasions with both families and also make sure to have special time for us?
- Have you ever cheated on someone or been cheated on?
- How important do you think self-care is?
- When conflict arises, do we tend to want to fight or avoid it?
- Can we comfortably and openly discuss our sexual needs, preferences and fears?
- Do you want kids? If so, how many and how do you intend to shape our children’s values?
Want more insight?
Consider a few consulting visits with me (in the office, over the phone or in a Zoom Conference Room). I can help you and your spouse communicate better in your marriage.
What are you doing to communicate better in your marriage? Leave a comment below, I’d love to hear what is working for you.