Premarital counselling and education have a well researched and documented role in improving the duration and health of a marriage – many studies show that it can reduce the chances of divorce from 50% to nearly 20%. Regardless of these statistics some people fail to see its benefits and are resistant to attending with their partner. Men are known to be particularly resistant to attending premarital education or counselling.
There may be several reasons for resistance to premarital counselling
- They may be worried that attending premarital counselling is like admitting there is something wrong with their relationship.
- They may feel they will be blamed for any issues that the relationship does have, or that they may be found to be inadequate.
- They may worry that if the therapist/educator is a woman they will gang up on him with his partner.
- Some men simply don’t like talking about their feelings and worry they won’t know what to say.
- Many men feel uncomfortable with the idea of talking about personal things like their relationship with a stranger.
All these and many other worries men have about the processes of premarital counselling and relationship counselling are valid concerns that most good therapists and relationship counsellors should be able to allay. Many good counsellors and therapists understand the concerns some men have and will address these directly in a way that hopefully reduces the anxiety that the male partner might feel.
What men can expect in premarital counselling
- No good therapist/educator will point fingers and lay blame on anyone in the relationship. Their role is to help educate and facilitate understanding between the two partners.
- Most good counsellors believe that helping to improve communication between the couple and to teach them skills that will help better their chances of a long and happy marriage is the foundation of their work.
- Counsellors understand the difficulty some people, not just men, have in expressing their feelings and have tools that can assist the person in finding the words to express themselves.
Finally, it is important to find a counsellor or premarital counselling program that both partners feel comfortable with, this will usually take some investigation by the couple. However there are many useful and interesting programs and workshops designed for premarital couples available.
How can Vision help?
If you would like to speak with a counsellor or psychologist, please contact us.Article Title: Male Partner Resistance to Premarital Counselling
Article By: Vision Counselling and Psychology, Perth, Western Australia
Web Address: www.visioncounselling.com.au
Published: 28/07/2016 “Why Most Men Resist Couples Counselling”(2015), (Deepening Relationships), Available: https://www.deepeningrelationships.com/why-most-men-resist-couples-counseling/ (Accessed: 2015, January 01).
Lazarus, C. (2012) “How to get a resistant partner into couples therapy” (Psychology Today), Available: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/think-well/201202/how-get-resistant-partner-couples-therapy (Accessed: 2015, January 01) Image Reference: Dollar Photo Club