Sevin Philips gives guidance on starting a marriage. Couples Counseling advice for relationships.
Hello, my name is Sevin Phillips. I’m a licensed marriage and family therapist. I’m here to talk about premarital counseling and really give you the things that I bring up in session with people who are starting their lives together. It’s a great way to fine tune your relationship and be set up for success. It’s a great way to take care of future bumps in the road and ensure that you will have a better chance at going through those things together in a good way.
The first one is pretty obvious: communication. We all have a different style of communicating. Some of us don’t want to rock the boat so we tend to withhold information and don’t want to bring up hard talk about subjects. Some of us are more reactive.
Whatever it is where ever you are in your partnership, you want to make sure you guys can, when these things happen, have some sort of way to talk these through together so they don’t go under the surface and cause you trouble later on.
Sex is a big one. It’s the thing we’re usually are uncomfortable talking about. It’s got to be one of the hardest things to talk about. In the beginning of the relationship, it’s no problem, right? Who needs to talk about it? But, in a lifetime together – 5, 10, 20 years together – sexual needs change and you have to have some format to be able to talk about these things. In addition, if you’re going to have children, being pregnant or first year of the child’s life, this is going to affect your sex life and you have to have a way to navigate these things.
Another one (probably the biggest one on the list) is money. Even though it’s not about money, it’s for the most of us, about security. Are we going to be okay? Is one of us more of a saver? Is one of us more of a spender? That’s why money usually comes up in a marriage. It’s really sensitive. It really triggers in a really core way.
You want to understand to talk about how you’re going to do this in a really successful way. Sometimes people put all their money in one pot. Sometimes people have separate accounts for their own personal spending and a pot in the middle to pay for everything. It doesn’t really matter which one you choose, but you want to choose that makes you feel the most comfortable, that makes you feel the most secure in your lives and that you can be set up for success in your lives finically.
Another one is expectations and roles. You might think, “Once we’re married, nothing is really going to change.” And maybe that’s true. But a lot of us have really hidden expectations and ideas about what life is going to be like together. Maybe we go them from our parents. Whatever it is, we just want to talk about what it is that you want things to look like. How do you want them to be when you have kids? How do you want to share the roles? And around the household chore, how does that work? What are your expectations about being married? Just having those out is a really great conversation.
Another thing is children. If you’re going to have children, there are some subjects we usually don’t talk about. What are your feelings about discipline do they differ? Do they vary? Talking about those ahead of time – parenting styles. Also, spirituality is something that comes up. Do you have a difference in your believe systems, and if so, how are you going to raise your children? How do you agree upon these things?
This is just an idea of what it’s like when you come to premarital counseling. It’s a really fun and open conversation, and again, it’s all about setting you up for a really happy relationship. I hope that was helpful. Thanks so much. Bye-bye.