33 Premarital Counseling Questions (From a Couples Therapist)

Published 08/16/2021

There will be premarital questions that will be unique to you, your relationship, and your expectations of a marriage. However, the premarital counseling questions listed below will help you and your partner facilitate conversations about the big topics that may cause problems later on in the relationship if you are not clear about where your partner stands.

33 marriage counseling questions every couple should discuss before getting married

Premarital counseling gives you a space to get know your significant other on a deeper level and address conflict in a productive way. Family is defined in many different ways and our perception of family is based on our own past experiences which may be different from what our partners have experienced.

Couples may make assumptions about what marriage will look like or not look like based on what was modeled to them by their own parents. The more conversation you can have around what you and your partner expect and find compromise where your beliefs aren’t completely aligned the easier it will be to move forward knowing that you are on the same page.

Good questions to ask are questions that lead to a deeper understanding of one another and what you value in a marriage. The point of asking these questions is to facilitate a deeper conversation.

  1. What do you appreciate most about your partner?
  2. What do you value about your relationship?
  3. Are you on the same page about children? How many children do you want to have?
  4. How do you relate to your family? How do you relate to your partner’s family?
  5. How do you imagine relating to your family of origin when you have your own family?
  6. How will you manage your money and household finances (joint or separate)?
  7. How do you feel about saving money and investing?
  8. How will you raise or educate your children?
  9. How important is your sexual relationship? What are your expectations around intimacy and sex?
  10. How do you want your spouse to express love and affection?
  11. What are your ideas around division of household chores?
  12. What is your relationship with money? What are your feelings about having or managing debt?
  13. How will you prioritize your careers in relation to your family and marriage?
  14. How do you deal with conflict that can not be resolved?
  15. What are your expectations or boundaries around relationships outside of the marriage such as friendships or co-worker relationships?
  16. What makes you compatible for marriage?
  17. Why is marriage important to you and your relationship?
  18. What does marriage and commitment mean to you?
  19. What does betrayal and infidelity mean to you?
  20. Where do you for see yourselves living and creating your life?
  21. How do you feel about religion? How important are your religious beliefs or spiritual beliefs to you?
  22. How will you practice your religion or spirituality? Will you raise your children in your religion or spiritual tradition?
  23. What are your deal breakers? What do you expect from your husband or wife?
  24. What type of support do you expect from your husband or wife in marriage? (personally, financially, and emotionally)
  25. How will you support your husband or wife? If you choose to have children how will you support them?
  26. How do expect to interact with your friends as a married couple?
  27. Do you agree with your partner’s lifestyle choices (health, diet, exercise, use of substances, sleeping habits, activities, hobbies, and professional drive/achievement)
  28. How will you include your spouse in making important or personal decisions?
  29. How will you maintain your personal identity within the marriage? How much time do you expect to spend with each other? How will you spend your free time together and apart?
  30. How do you feel about spending money? How compatible are your spending habits?
  31. What are your individual core values? How do your partners core values align with yours?
  32. How do you define a happy, loving, and fulfilling marriage?
  33. Who are your positive relationship role models for marriage? Whose marriage do you admire and why?

Importance of premarital counseling

Research shows that people who share the same values, communicate effectively, and have a good friendship are more likely to enjoy their romantic relationship and build a marriage that lasts. Premarital counseling could help you and your partner explore where you stand on important issues. A couple might already know that they want a family and children however, a counselor can help you discuss your vision of family and what you each expect from each other as partners and parents.

Another couple may wonder how to best manage a big career while still making their marriage a priority. Some clients are coming into the relationship with children and need discuss effective strategies for blended families. No matter what your unique situation is, premarital counseling is an opportunity to get to know your significant other even better.

Other big questions such as how you define fidelity and commitment, how will you engage with your own parents, your expectations around job and career, and how you spend money and manage finances are other topics couples will discuss in premarital counseling.

Premarital counseling questions are intended to facilitate must discuss topics related to marriage Sometimes people can make assumptions about where their partner stands on make or break issues, or that if they aren’t on the same page that their fiance may come around one day. Making assumptions is not helpful and could set you up for problems in the future. Addressing these must discuss issues in premarital marriage counseling prior to marriage will help reduce disagreements later or help you decide whether a legally binding long term commitment like marriage is in both of your best interest.

When you plan to spend the rest of your life with someone you want to know that you are compatible. You also want to have the skills to keep the marriage healthy even during the difficult times. Premarital counseling is a way to build that skill set and learn how to talk about the topics that can be challenging.

What is discussed during premarital counseling?

Premarital counseling questions can include anything and everything! It is an opportunity to talk about concerns and ask questions. Feel free to bring any topic to premarital counseling related to your future with your significant other.

When you are planning to spend the rest of your lives together it is important to be prepared to address challenges related to your life together. It is helpful and necessary to know where your partner stands on both the big and small issues. Often couples assume they are on the same page about marital issues but have not taken the time to discuss them, and may be surprised to find out their partner has a very different opinion than they had imagined. This doesn’t mean you have found the wrong person! Instead it is an opportunity for growth and a chance to discuss and resolve anything related to your relationship that has the potential to be problematic in the future.

Premarital counseling gives you the opportunity to learn even more about your future spouse and the skills to talk about topics where you may not be on the same page. Your therapist will ask you premarital counseling questions to help facilitate the honest conversations you may have been avoiding or not thought of quite yet. You will also gain insight into your significant other’s behavior as well as your own and learn tools for effectively resolving conflicts and improving communication.

Discussing premarital questions with your partner in counseling that you have not yet broached allows you the opportunity to explore difficult conversations or topics you may have not yet tackled. Premarital counseling is a helpful way to explore some of the more hard to talk about topics like religion, money, sex, health, career, children, division of household labor, debt, friends, and family. These conversations help to ensure that you and your partner are on the same page about marriage.

Your premarital counselor may even pose some premarital questions that you had not yet considered. Couples counseling can help you and your partner improve your communication prior to getting married and gain the tools you need to have these conversations in an effective way throughout your marriage.

How many sessions is premarital counseling?

On average most couples attend 5-10 sessions of premarital counseling and clients usually attend once per week or every other week. Therapy is an opportunity for growth and a space to address conflict in a healthy and productive way. Many married couples will engage in therapy after they are married as a way of maintaining the healthy habits and deepening their connection with their partner.

Couples who have been together for a long time or have a history of trauma with one another or individually, may have more past history to examine and conflicts to address or resolve. They may engage in therapy for a longer period of time.

Couples who are still in the honeymoon phase of their relationship may not have a history of past conflicts that need resolution however, they can benefit from having a structured environment to talk about their future together. They may use therapy as an opportunity to discuss the important premarital counseling questions they have not yet explored.

Other couples may want to use the time with a premarital counselor to improve their communication and coping tools. The amount of time spent in premarital counseling depends on you and your specific relationship goals. You will get back what you invest in your relationship. Premarital counseling gives you the opportunity to invest in the success of your marriage right from the start.

How do you answer premarital counseling questions?

It is important to be honest when answering premarital counseling questions. This can be scary if you fear disagreements or difficult conversations with your significant other however, whatever you fear sharing will eventually be revealed in the long run when you plan on being together for life. The point of counseling is to put it all on the table. One hour per week can have a significant impact on your future outcomes.

Marriage is an opportunity to experience a deep and authentic life long connection with your spouse. It is important to reveal who you truly are and that you feel free to ask for what you need out of a relationship. Conflict can be uncomfortable however, it can also be an opportunity for growth and an avenue for facilitating a deeper connection. Establishing good habits related to how you interact and communicate with your spouse will reduce escalating conflict and the damage to the marriage that negative patterns can cause.

Counseling can help you start your marriage with mutual understanding and trust when you take steps to address the must discuss topics like your sexual relationship, family, concerns around career and work life balance, money, and children. A counselor can help you have structured conversations related to your future.

Counseling helps you stay married

Marriage counseling is not just for married couples in crisis. Many clients choose to engage in counseling through out their married lives as part of their personal self-care routine. You and the person you marry will grow and evolve throughout your lives together. All marriages will experience difficulties and tough times. The goal is not to avoid these challenges but instead develop the tools to face them and overcome obstacles without turning away from one another.

Premarital counseling can help get you started on the right foot and support you in maintaining the health of your relationship for the duration. Your counselor can teach you skills for addressing emotional conversations, create a safe environment where you can feel free to bring up difficult topics, and help you improve your communication. These skills will serve you throughout your married life.

Laura Richer, Seattle Therapist

Laura Richer, Seattle Therapist

Laura Richer is a psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, and coach. Located in the Queen Ann neighborhood of Seattle, she is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and has been practicing in the state of Washington since 2011.

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