The True Premarital Counseling Cost

By: Mary Elizabeth Dean

Updated June 12, 2020

Medically Reviewed By: Aaron Dutil

Receiving premarital counseling is not just for religious people. Couples who are engaged or planning to become involved usually do not know what to expect in marriage. A lot of times, they incorrectly assume things will be the same as they were before marriage. Couples may also think that the financial cost of receiving premarital counseling makes it not worth it in their relationship. The true prenuptial counseling cost comes when couples do not receive premarital counseling. There are many conversations couples should have before going forward with their relationship into marriage, and having someone to guide you through this process can help tremendously.

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Are You And Your Partner Prepared?

Imagine you are building a house for you and your partner. The two of you are planning to spend your lives together in this house. Forever is a long time, so you want this to be the best home it can be. While you are fantasizing about all the lavish furnishings and beautiful exterior, though, you rush through the building of the house's base. Before you know it, all you have worked for will collapse with the foundation.

A marriage is like a home for your heart. Everybody wants theirs to be cozy and secure. Many couples go wrong, though, when they rush through building their base. This is why it is so important to be prepared. Without strong support to rely on, couples might not be able to withstand the shocks that marriage often brings, and the whole thing can come crashing down. Premarital counseling serves to bolster the things on which a successful marriage is built. Things like communication, how to handle conflict, and respect are covered during counseling sessions. These may seem like common sense solutions, especially when you are early on in their love stage and have not hit any real bumps in the road.

You and your partner have likely focused many future conversations around large important topics like if you will have kids or not and where you should settle down. But skirting over other essential questions is a mistake. For instance, have you and your partner discussed finances? Will your partner's career mean you will both have to move somewhere new and are you both okay with this? Although some couples are afraid of having these conversations, it is much better to discuss them now than further down the road. There are many questions that couples have a difficult time answering by themselves. A premarital counselor can assist couples in these conversations as well as creating an environment where open discussion can occur.

Premarital Counseling Cost Down The Road

Following the previous analogy, when a faulty base causes a building to collapse, one must start from the ground up if they wish to rebuild it. Doing that is sure to take quite a bit of time and effort. But that, unfortunately, would not be the only issue at hand. How many of those materials are damaged now? If the crash has enough force, those materials may not be usable anymore.

They say that failure to prepare is preparation for failure. Premarital counseling can help mitigate the damage that future stressors may cause. It may also help couples establish plans for dealing with those stressors. If, however, couples choose not to take the initiative, those problems may arise spontaneously. It is always better to know how to handle a crisis than to have to improvise.

Couples worry about the cost of premarital counseling should consider the long-term effects of not receiving advice early on. Couples who receive marital counseling too late in their marriage often stand a smaller chance of staying together. Other couples that receive marital counseling may be dealing with issues they should have brought up before they were married. While it is challenging to foresee issues you and your partner may face in the future, premarital counseling can reduce the financial and emotional costs in the long-term. Premarital counseling can teach you and your partner how to discuss issues in a healthy manner, which may mean you and your partner do not need counseling further down the road.


External Constraints In The Future

If you have time now, it should be used wisely. There are points in life where responsibilities drown a person's needs, and fatigue makes everything difficult. It is during these times that marriages will face the most stress. Ironically, those external factors will make seeking help difficult - you just won't have the time or energy.

Premarital counseling is effective at combating this dilemma. If it is sought out when both partners have enough time to focus, they will see several benefits. For one thing, they will have been prepared to deal with those hectic moments healthily and effectively. Premarital counseling allows couples to learn methods of conflict resolution before conflicts happening. They may also learn how to make the most of the time they do have together. These skills serve to keep a relationship strong in trying times.

On top of that, they will not have to diminish further their meager time allotment attending counseling if they already know what to do. After a long and stressful day of work, it would be nice to be able to relax instead of go to therapy. This will have both physical and mental health benefits for the individual.

Finally, as has been mentioned previously, couples will not have to break their banks. Emergencies are a guarantee in life - it is simply a matter of when they will occur. Financial stress is a widespread reason why couples end up unhappy. In moments of finance-related pressure, the last thing anyone wants to do is spend more money.

The chances of having to empty your wallet for couples counseling at inopportune times is lowered by seeking premarital therapy. Couples would not be required to spend what money they did have on advice. Instead, they could spend it on vacation or improvements to their home. They may be able to spend it on fixing their financial woes themselves. In any case, couples will surely be happy that they sought advice prior, as they might not be able to enjoy the present had they not fully.

Problems Can Compound

It is very important to nip issues in the bud as soon as possible because those problems can quickly grow out of control. Time is one thing that stops for no one. As it continues, problems that were once negligible snowball into pet peeves and deal-breakers. Many couples do not address these problems before entering into marriage. This might be because they actively choose not to confront the issues, or because they simply are not aware of their existence, to begin with.

Premarital counseling allows couples to open up about these problems. A counselor's unbiased perception may lead to previously ignored problems being discovered. In either case, the presence of a mental health professional is sure to promote growth and security in the marriage. Discussing and discovering these issues earlier on will pay off later when couples are prepared to fix them.

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Everyone Can Benefit

It is somewhat likely that some of you reading this article are entering your first marriage. Others of you may have tried marriage before and are preparing to try once more. Regardless of your experience, premarital counseling offers a multitude of benefits for new couples.

Young men and women who are entering upon their first marriage are probably intimidated by the sheer size of the commitment they are making. The rest of your life is a very long time, indeed. On top of that, younger adults are not likely to have as much experience as their older counterparts. Seeking out counseling before marriage can be a game-changer for people who do not know what to expect. Relationship counselors have seen it all, the good and the bad. They know, based on what they have seen, what can make or break a marriage. If you feel like you are walking in the dark, a premarital counselor will be more than happy to light the way and guide you.

People who have been married previously stand to benefit, too. Divorce is an unpleasant experience for all involved. It stands to reason that someone who has been through it would like to avoid having it happen again. Premarital counseling will yield sound advice for maintaining the new marriage. It may even provide answers as to why things went wrong in the last one. It is essential to realize the mistakes that have been made in the past and make every possible effort to keep them from repeating. No matter what, it cannot hurt to take precautionary measures.

Whether you are younger or older, previously married or not, every relationship is unique and is sure to present novel challenges. No two personalities are the same, and new partners still have a lot to learn about one another. Premarital counseling is a chance to do just that. Seeking counseling will give both partners new insights into one another and the dynamics of their relationship. These insights will be useful in moments of high stress and tension. Partners may think twice about what they do and say if they have a clear understanding of how it will affect their loved one.

Online Premarital Counseling

An easy way for couples to receive premarital counseling is with an online counselor. Couples have the flexibility to choose the time of their counseling sessions as well as choose from a wider variety of counselors. Receiving counseling from the comfort of your own home means cutting down on travel time and cost. Starting is easy, and a certified counselor can begin answering your questions right away. They can help ease any fears you and your partner have entering a new phase in your relationship. They can also help the two of you to learn more about one another as people.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What does premarital counseling do?

Premarital counseling, sometimes also called premarital therapy, is a form of therapy for couples planning on getting married. Premarital counseling can help couples to discuss whatever doubts or reservations they may have about marriage and allows them to address some of the potential pitfalls that may also come up in their relationship. While they prepare for marriage, premarital therapy offers couples the opportunity to have their relationship evaluated by an experienced and licensed relationship expert. Premarital counseling can help couples to build a strong, honest, and committed relationship before and after their wedding, and ensures that the individuals involved have a clear understanding of their partner's expectations, insecurities, and values.

Should you do premarital counseling?

Marriage is a union between two people who have agreed to spend the rest of their life together. But sometimes, these people come from different backgrounds and have different life experiences that may lead to conflict or frustration in their relationship. Premarital counseling can help couples resolve these issues devoid of sentiment or emotion, and enables them to gain a broader understanding of their partner. Regardless of your reasons for getting married, premarital counseling gives you the tools and insight to have a fulfilling marriage. By engaging in premarital counseling, you and your partner can sort out any misgivings or flaws that may hinder the success of your marriage before it's too late. When choosing a marriage counselor, ensure the person is a licensed professional.

When should you start premarital counseling?

Just as the name implies, premarital counseling is meant to take place before the start of a marriage. This could be weeks or months before you start preparing for marriage, but it's never after the wedding. However, it's always best to start premarital counseling as early as you can, because it gives you enough time to work on your relationship. When you start premarital counseling two or three weeks before your wedding, you may discover that you and your partner still have a lot to agree on as couples, which may result in a postponement of the wedding. This can be awkward and uncomfortable, especially if money had been spent planning the wedding and inviting guests. To avoid inconvenient situations of this nature, it's best to start premarital counseling the moment you are sure about what you want from the relationship in the long-term.

How much does premarital counseling cost?

This depends on the type of premarital counseling you need, and the kind of couples therapist you decide to work with. Some of the factors that contribute to the cost of premarital counseling are the length and frequency of sessions, the range of issues to be resolved, and the duration of the program. According to a nationwide survey, the cost of premarital counseling varies between $45 and $250. This puts the average cost of premarital counseling at around $95 per session. However, one of the ways you can reduce the cost of premarital counseling is to apply for an online private counseling session. Regain offers affordable online premarital counseling services you can always take advantage of.

How many sessions is premarital counseling?

A complete premarital counseling program involves high-quality counseling sessions with an AAMFT certified therapist. However, there is no fixed time frame for premarital counseling. The appropriate model to use based on the objectives of the couple and their specific needs would be determined by the couples therapist. On average, most premarital counseling sessions last for an hour, and these sessions may take place once or multiple times a week. The standard duration for premarital counseling is six sessions, and this may be spread over weeks and months. Due to personality and cultural differences, some couples would require more sessions to sort out whatever issues that can threaten the success and stability of their marriage, and in this instance, the therapist would usually recommend more sessions.

What percentage of couples do premarital counseling?

Many individuals engage in different forms of premarital counseling, and the activity seems quite popular among couples. Studies show that 44% of couples go through the process of counseling before getting married. With most marriages taking place in a religious environment, some religious institutions equally offer premarital counseling programs for couples, and in some instances, these sessions are mandatory before a wedding can take place between their members. Since these programs are usually faith-based and often unsuitable for nonreligious couples, many choose to consult the service of relationship therapist and marriage counselors whose methods are more science-based than spiritual.

How effective is premarital counseling?

Premarital counseling can help couples communicate better and improve their weaknesses. A study found that couples who received some form of private counseling before getting married have a 30 percent rate of marital success in comparison to those who don't. Emotion-focused therapy (EFT) has also been shown to have an impact of 75% when it comes to improving a couple of relations. This is supported by data from the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, which shows that 98% of couples expressed satisfaction with their counseling experience. While there is no amount of premarital therapy that can guarantee a perfect marriage, these sessions would enable you and your partner to deal with some of the issues that married people struggle with.

What questions do they ask at premarital counseling?

Questions asked during premarital counseling sessions often relate to family structure, conflict resolution, finance, sexual intimacy, relationship history, relationship goals, child planning, cultural differences, ideological beliefs, career aspirations, and moral values. These questions may be asked during individual or group assessment sessions using online tools like Prepare Enrich. Prepare Enrich is designed to identify and clarify a couple's strengths and weaknesses, along with other changes, through a series of questions. The aim of Prepare Enrich is to ensure compatibility and mutual understanding between the couples. Premarital counseling may not completely resolve all the issues in a relationship, but it's important that couples have the essential issues and sticking points in their relationship effectively addressed by the therapist.


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