Is pre-marriage counselling common in the UK?
When you think of relationship counselling, what type of couple do you imagine reaching out for support? Is it a young, happy couple in the early stages of their relationship, or is it a couple in despair after years of marriage?
If you’re imagining the latter, you’re not alone. It’s a common misconception that marriage counselling is reserved for those in crisis, or those who are already married.
But in fact, relationship counselling amongst young and/or non-married couples is on the rise. UK counselling charity Relate, for example, has reported a 30% increase in clients in their twenties and thirties since 2014.
So, why would someone reach out for relationship counselling ahead of their wedding? Isn’t a bad omen? Does it mean that cracks are showing before you’ve even started?
Well, it’s quite the opposite!
Learning about yourself, your partner and your relationship as early as possible will benefit you both in the long run. It can support you both in laying healthy foundations and give you the tools to cope with any challenges that might lie in your future.
In one of our recent blog posts, I shared five benefits of couples counselling for unmarried couples, which I would recommend if you’re considering this journey. They include:
- Building your skills to work through differences: Differences and disagreements are inevitable in relationships, but what’s important is how you to respond to them. Counselling will give you the tools to handle these in a healthy and productive way.
- Exploring the influences of your childhood: Subconsciously, our childhood plays a large part in our adult relationships. Understanding how this influence manifests itself prepares you both for handling it effectively.
- Understanding the stages of your relationship: All relationships go through a spectrum of stages. By being aware of them, you’ll learn how to recognise each stage and how best to approach them together.
- Learning how to be there for each other: The process encourages safe and open conversations that allow you to communicate what you want from your relationship and to listen fully to your partner.
- Creating a relationship vision: When couples have a clear vision for their relationship, it is more likely they will live by it. Counselling will help you to develop a relationship that is in line with your values, intentions and vision.
Couples therapy is not the only option for you. We also lead couple workshops called Getting The Love You Want. Although it is not comparable to couples counselling, it is an intensive and transformational experience that can elevate any couple’s relationship.
Click here to find a therapist in your area if you’d like to explore this journey.