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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Pre Marriage Coaching

Recently a young woman called me to inquire about 'pre marital coaching.' "Do you have a program?" she asked. I said "Do you?" She laughed. I asked her several more serious questions: "Tell me what you think marriage is? What is your vision for you and your honey? What would a 'good' marriage look like? What are some indicators of a 'bad' marriage?

'How many marriages do you know or are familiar with (there's that old word family again) that you respect? Who in your lives could be a good model, a good coach or mentor for you? If your marriage was to fail what would you predict the cause to be?

'Is one of you more serious about marriage than the other? What gifts do each of you bring to relationship?'

I asked a few more. Then she stopped me. "I just wanted to know if you have a program/ seminar or workshop that we could attend," she said. "I haven't really thought about all those questions."

A good introductory 'course' on marriage would include those and many more questions and their answers. Chances are this young couple hasn't had a lot of help in thinking about marriage, chances are that they've seen a good number of failed marriages and that they want to 'do it right.'

We start out with huge hopes for the possibilities of our love. That's the good news. The uncomfortable news is that when this couple marries, few will help them establish a healthy path, few will be there to comfort and encourage, teach or coach them in how to transform their early enthusiasm into a life of rich possibility together.

The answer to her question? Yes, we do offer "pre marital coaching and seminars." We also offer email and phone coaching, resources, and workshops. We believe that marriage is a good thing and people of good will, as is this young woman, need all the support they can get.

1 comment:

Mark Goodyear said...

This reminds me of John Gottman's Love Lab. John Medina, a scientist who worked with Gottman, told me that the number one predictor of marriage failure is contempt.

When partners show contempt for each other, the marriage will fail 95% of the time. Or something like that.

So here's the question. Can you teach people not to show contempt through pre-marital counseling?