Why prepare for being married?
December 28, 2008 § Leave a comment
Prior preparation prevents poor performance!
People study for years to get a good job. Just selecting the right job for you isn’t enough – you have to do some prior preparation to make sure you can do what you will need to do. Likewise when having a baby most people would find out about how to care for children, what to prepare for and what to expect. Many would read books about it.
In the same way, surely it is important to set up a marriage, something that you commit to for the rest of your lives, in a way that focuses you on making it succeed?
There are a few books on pre-marriage preparation (also called counseling) for Christians, but these all seem to be written by lovely people albeit with greying hair. This perspective is definitely the authority on the subject of successful marriages, but you need to look at things in a whole lot of ways if you want to understand them better. This is the perspective of a couple who have been through the first 6 years of knowing each other.
For non-Christians, there are virtually no books on the subject. I couldn’t find any counseling at all for people who want to get married but are put off by having to go into a church environment. My brother and his new wife are one example where I looked and looked for something to help prepare them and came up empty. Marriage is definitely 1000 times better with God to back it up, but non-Christians often avoid the counseling to avoid other things… and that means they miss out on vital pre-marriage planning.
By the time my husband and I were ready to get married, we had access to a fantastic couple who gave us pre-marriage counseling. We weren’t just told about where marriage started, we were given practical tools to last us over the years and easy ways to remember them; we were surveyed to find out areas where we may clash in future; we were encouraged about how to deal with and have the hard conversations.
It wasn’t just those sessions. We also over time read books such as “Whale Done” and “How to Win Friends and Influence People” and our learning has been supplemented by Sunday services, which in encouraging us to be better people also encourages us to be better husbands/wives. It supported the things we learned and made them become a normal part of our every day interactions with each other.
Those kinds of tools and tips should also be available for people who are put off by having to go to a church environment and therefore don’t get access to any of this. That’s why I’m starting with a blog (with help from my husband), to tell of our own experiences and offer some tools and tips relevant for any couples that are newly ready to make such a commitment to each other.
I invite you to use the information and resources and add comments in this blog, to help prepare you for a fantastic marriage. On one condition – do it together – willingly!