Premarital Counselling

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Pre-marriage Counselling In Singapore - Insightful Counselling

“There is no more lovely, friendly and charming relationship, communion or company than a good marriage.” – Martin Luther

Premarital counselling is a specialized form of therapy that helps couples prepare for marriage. It addresses potential issues, aligns expectations, and promotes open communication. Couples work with therapists or religious leaders to develop essential skills, identify conflict areas, and manage specific relationship issues.

Many people think that counselling is only for serious problems, but this is not true. This is especially relevant for those in relationships.

Consider This Scenario

You and your partner are deciding whether to have children.

This decision, much like planning a major trip, requires thorough discussion and understanding of each other’s expectations and desires. For example,

– Do you both envision having children in your future? If so, how many?

– What are your thoughts on parenting styles and responsibilities?

– How do you feel about the financial and emotional investments that come with raising children?

Imagine you both decide to have children, but one of you expects to stay home with the kids while the other continues to work full-time.

If this expectation isn’t discussed beforehand, it could lead to frustration and resentment. One partner might assume they will share parenting duties equally, while the other might plan to be the primary caregiver.

Discussing these expectations is essential to avoid feeling disappointed or overwhelmed when reality doesn’t match your unspoken plans.

On the other hand, suppose you both agree not to have children. This decision also requires clear communication. Consider questions like:

– What are our goals and dreams if we don’t have kids?

– How will we spend our time and resources?

– What will our support system look like as we age?

By having these intentional conversations, you can uncover and address expectations that might otherwise go unnoticed. Just as forgetting to pack sunscreen for a beach trip can cause frustration, unspoken expectations about significant life decisions can lead to disappointment and conflict. Discussing these topics openly ensures that both partners are on the same page, reducing misunderstandings and enhancing the overall satisfaction of your relationship.

In summary, whether you decide to have children or not, intentional conversations about your expectations and plans are crucial. Ensuring that both partners’ visions for the future are aligned helps navigate potential challenges. This approach strengthens your relationship and sets the foundation for a successful and fulfilling marriage.

What is Pre-marital Counselling?

Pre-marital counselling is for couples before they marry or commit to a long-term relationship.

– It helps couples have difficult conversations, improve communication skills, and build self-awareness.

– It facilitates clear and intentional conversations before making significant life decisions. It can help build the foundation for the success of future commitment together.

– Premarital counselling helps to discuss different values and beliefs that will impact long-term relationships.

– Our Insightful counsellors and psychotherapists cannot stop stressing the importance of having crucial discussions about these topics.

What are the Benefits of Pre-marital Counselling?

–  Honesty and Openness: Counselling creates a safe space for couples to be genuine and understand each other deeply, fostering emotional bonding and fundamental knowledge of one another.

–  Decision-Making: Helps couples discuss significant life decisions like living arrangements, financial roles, and parenting, ensuring both partners are on the same page.

–  Realistic Expectations: Counselling helps develop realistic views of married life, dispelling myths and preparing couples for inevitable conflicts.

–  Shared Vision: Helps couples create and nurture a shared vision for their future, aligning their goals and deepening their bond.

What Topics to Expect from Pre-marital Counselling?

The topics covered in pre-marital counselling depend on the couple’s needs, but some common areas are relevant to long-term relationships. Even if you’re not considering pre-marital counselling, these topics can foster deep conversations early in a relationship:

Topics Discussed in Pre-marital Counselling.

1. Communication Skills

– Learning how to communicate with each other effectively.

– Understanding each other’s communication styles.

2. Conflict Resolution

– Developing strategies to resolve disagreements amicably.

– Recognising the root causes of conflicts and how to resolve them.

3. Financial Management

– Discussing financial goals and budgeting.

– Addressing any financial concerns or debts.

4. Intimacy and Sexuality

– Exploring beliefs and values about intimacy.

– Discussing expectations and concerns about sexual relationships.

5. Role Expectations

– Clarifying roles and responsibilities within the marriage.

– Understanding each other’s expectations regarding household duties, careers, and family roles.

6. Parenting Perspectives

– Discussing views on having children and parenting styles.

– Addressing any concerns or differences in parenting philosophies.

7. Cultural and Religious Beliefs

– Exploring any cultural or religious differences.

– Understanding how these beliefs will impact the marriage.

8. Life Goals and Aspirations

– Sharing individual and shared life goals.

– Ensuring alignment on future aspirations and plans.

9. Family Dynamics

– Understanding each other’s family backgrounds and dynamics.

– Discussing the role of extended family in your marriage.

10. Compatibility Assessment

– Evaluating overall compatibility and identifying any potential areas of concern.

– Discuss how to navigate differences and build a strong partnership.

11. Needs and Expectations

– Understanding each partner’s needs and expectations in the relationship.

– Addressing any unmet needs and how to fulfil them.

12. Dealing with Stress

– Learning techniques to manage stress and support each other.

– Discuss how to handle life’s challenges together.

These topics help couples build a solid foundation for their marriage by fostering better understanding, communication, and preparedness for the future.

How Insightful Counselling Can Help

Our experienced counsellors offer personalised pre-marital counselling sessions at Insightful Counselling. We focus on:

–  Needs Assessment: Understanding each partner’s needs and expectations.

–  Compatibility Assessment: Evaluating compatibility between partners.

–  Conflict Resolution Techniques: Learning effective ways to handle disagreements.

–  Financial Management: Addressing financial matters within the relationship.

–  Communication Skills: Enhancing communication between partners.

–  Intimacy Values: Discussing intimacy-related beliefs and values.

–  Parenting Perspectives: Exploring each other’s views on parenting.

–  Role Expectations: Clarifying roles and responsibilities in marriage.

Why You Should Go For Pre-Marital Counselling - Insightful Counselling

Why Choose Insightful?

Our family therapists, Adeeti and Huay Khem bring in their experience to help you and your partner in preparing for your marriage. Their priority is building a therapeutic alliance and helping bring a variety of topics to air like finances, beliefs and values, roles in marriage, dealing with respective families, children and role of parenting and so much more. Both help to align your marriage goals to achieve a happy and successful marriage

Begin With Strong Foundation

Pre-marital counseling can help couples establish a strong foundation for their marriage. It can also help couples learn how to communicate effectively, resolve conflicts, and work together to achieve their shared goals.

How Pre-Marital Counselling Can Help Your Relationship - Insightful Counselling

Meet Our Pre-Marital Counseling Experts

At Insightful Counselling, we pride ourselves on offering expert counselling services tailored to couples preparing for marriage. Our team includes:

Reena Goenka

Reena Goenka, MSc (Counselling), SAC Master Clinical Member: With over 15 years of experience, Reena specialises in using Transactional Analysis to enhance self-awareness and understand relationship dynamics in premarital counselling. Her approach helps couples explore and improve their communication and connection before marriage.

Adeeti Jain

Adeeti Jain - Counsellor at Insightful Counselling Singapore

Adeeti Jain, MSc (Counselling), SAC Associate Member:

Adeeti brings a wealth of knowledge and experience. She utilises the Gottman Method for premarital counselling and excels at helping couples understand and manage emotional and behavioural challenges.

Yap Huay Khem

Huay Khem - Counsellor at Insightful Counselling SingaporeYap Huay Khem, MSc (Counseling), SAC Registered Clinical Counsellor
Known for her calm and nonjudgmental demeanour, Yap Huay Khem uses Transactional Analysis to help couples explore and improve their relationship dynamics, fostering a safe and open environment.

Lily Ng

Lily Ng, MSc (Counselling), SAC Associate Member: Lily provides a supportive and nurturing environment for couples, using Transactional Analysis to help them build resilience and develop healthy coping strategies while understanding relationship issues.

Case Studies: Exploring Values and Beliefs in Pre-Marital Counselling

Case Study 1: Chee Ng and Archana’s Journey (not their real names due to confidentiality)

Imagine Chee Ng and Archana, an interfaith couple, deciding to seek pre-marital counselling to understand better and navigate their cultural differences. They knew they loved each other but also realised the importance of addressing their unique backgrounds before tying the knot. In the sessions, our counsellors used the Gottman Method to enhance their communication about understanding values and beliefs around the importance of each faith, how it would impact them, and what changes they would require. For example, they discussed what faith their baby would follow if they had children.

These conversations taught them to recognise and respect each other’s perspectives. They talked about their emotional needs, like how Archana valued open communication and how Chee Ng appreciated acts of service. They found themselves better equipped to handle disagreements and misunderstandings as they continued these tailored sessions. They built a strong foundation by aligning their values and beliefs, which made them more confident and prepared for their future together. This journey strengthened their bond and set the stage for a successful marriage.

Case Study 2: Aswab and Aarifa’s Transformation (not their real names due to confidentiality)

Now, picture Aswab and Aarifa, who constantly clashed over financial management and parenting perspectives. They decided to try pre-marital counselling to resolve these issues before getting married. Our counsellor used Transactional Analysis in the sessions to help them understand their communication patterns and improve their interactions.

The counsellor delved into their core values and beliefs about money and parenting. For example, Aswab might have been raised believing that saving every penny is crucial, while Aarifa might have valued spending on experiences and education for their future children. By understanding where their beliefs came from, they could better appreciate each other’s viewpoints.

Through these sessions, they learned to recognise their behaviours and responses. Aswab realised he often became defensive during financial discussions, while Aarifa saw that she tended to avoid these conversations altogether. With effective conflict resolution techniques and financial planning strategies, they started addressing their issues more constructively.

By the end of their time together, Aswab and Aarifa were more aligned in their goals and values. They felt more harmonious and prepared for their marital journey, having developed a deeper understanding of each other’s perspectives and a stronger foundation for their future together.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to be part of a particular faith to receive pre-marital counselling?

No, you don’t. While some faith groups may require or recommend it, pre-marital counselling is available to anyone, regardless of religious affiliation, and can benefit any long-term relationship.

How do I find a pre-marital counsellor?

Many therapists who offer couples therapy also provide pre-marital counselling. You can start by checking with therapists you’re interested in or searching platforms like Psychology Today. If you prefer faith-based counselling, inquire with your place of worship or specialised centres like Khalil Centre Canada for Muslims.

What if pre-marital counselling creates issues in my relationship?

Pre-marital counselling aims to clarify and address existing differences, not create new problems. In the long run, it strengthens your relationship by providing a supportive environment for discussion and resolution of potential issues.

Life changes. What if what we discuss in pre-marital counselling no longer applies in a few years?

While life changes, pre-marital counselling equips you with a deeper understanding of each other and strategies to handle future challenges. It helps you navigate the early years of marriage and adjust to life together, providing long-term value.

How long does pre-marital counselling usually last?

The duration varies based on the couple’s needs. Some may benefit from a few sessions, while others require longer-term support.

Is pre-marital counselling confidential?

Yes, all sessions are confidential. However, exceptions exist if there is a risk of harm to the couple or others.

How do I find a qualified pre-marital counsellor in Singapore?

Look for counsellors who have qualifications in working with families and marriages, such as premarital courses, the Gottman Method Transactional Analysis, family therapy, etc.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please contact us at Insightful Counselling. We are here to support your journey towards a fulfilling and successful marriage.

Before you leave…

It can be challenging to talk about the future, but pre-marital counseling can make the process easier. By dedicating time to ask tough questions and clarify your future together, you can feel more confident about your path. Remember to express gratitude to each other for being courageous and vulnerable.

While pre-marital counselling is a valuable tool, it’s important to have these discussions even without it. We recommend talking through these topics with your partner ahead of time. Some surprises are okay during counselling, but not everything should be unexpected. We wish you the best on your journey!

Testimonials

Reena's pre-marital counselling has been invaluable for us as we prepare for our union, which includes bringing my stepson into our new family. She helped us navigate our values around children and set clear expectations for my boyfriend's role as a stepfather. Reena also listened to my husband's beliefs on education, which was crucial for us. For example, I had anxiety about how my son, who struggles with his studies, would feel about a stepdad stepping in to discipline him. These triggered memories of my own difficult childhood. Reena helped me understand that my boyfriend's approach and beliefs, though different from mine, could be beneficial for my son and that it was his way of parenting. I realised I didn't need to worry or overprotect my child and that I could trust my boyfriend to do his job as a parent. Thanks to Reena, we now have a stronger foundation and a clearer understanding of our roles as parents.

Adeeti made pre-marital counselling a wonderful experience. She guided us through important topics like financial planning and conflict resolution. Thanks to her support, we feel much more prepared for married life.

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