Pre-marital Counseling Lowers Divorce Rates

Pre-marital Counseling Divorce Rates

Marriage counseling does not have the best success rate for feuding couples for a variety of reasons, and statistics show that it does little to prevent divorce. But before you begin to think that couples counseling is useless, studies have confirmed that pre-marital counseling actually helps lower divorce rates and improve relationship harmony down the road.

So why does pre-marital counseling help more couples before marriage starts than therapy for those who have already taken wedding vows? In some cases, it helps prevent divorce by preventing a marriage altogether, such as Sandra Stith describes. Stith is a professor of family therapy and marriage for Kansas State University, and she says that pre-marital counseling helps reveal severe problem areas in a relationship, such as abuse or power imbalances. “Participate in pre-marital counseling or other forms of relationship counseling before finalizing wedding plans. [Couples are reluctant] to call off a wedding after the date is set and the dress is purchased.” Even if the relationship contains no abuse, couples undergoing pre-marital counseling may nevertheless realize that their relationship will simply not work in the long run, so they can prevent a divorce later down the road by deciding not to marry at all.

What about couples that still get married after pre-marital counseling? So far, the statistics are in their favor. For example, a 2003 meta-analysis called “Evaluating the Effectiveness of Pre-marital Prevention Programs” reviewed over twenty studies on pre-marital counseling, and researchers found that couples who underwent counseling before their wedding had a 30% higher marital success rate than those who did not. Seth Meyers, a psychologist with the L.A. Department of Mental Health, reviewed several of these pre-marital studies and wondered if other factors were present. For example, pre-marital counseling is more prevalent amongst religious communities or couples who express strong religious commitment. His conclusion? “As a therapist, I can say that the earlier a couple starts therapy, the better the prognosis is for the longevity of the relationship… Pre-marital counseling is the smartest decision that any couple can make, and you don’t need to be religious to try it.”

Pre-marital counseling allows couples to identify problem areas and develop tactics before patterns of resentment and distrust develop in the marriage. If you or a loved-one are considering saying “I do,” but you have doubts or fears of divorce down the road, see if pre-marital counseling is an option for you. Like any form of therapy, pre-marital therapy is not a foolproof solution for everyone; however, you can certainly benefit from counseling if both you and your spouse-to-be are willing to give it a try.

Was this tip helpful? Why not share it?
This entry was posted in Divorce, Emotions, General, Marriage, Recovery, Relationship, Strategy by Tipsofdivorce Team. Bookmark the permalink.

About Tipsofdivorce Team

Tips of Divorce articles are written by our expert team consisting of a recent divorcee, the creator of the website, a lawyer, a journalist, and content managers who edit and publish the articles. All contributors to this site have been impacted by divorce in their family and/or social lives. Our writers come from a wide array of backgrounds to give insights not only into life during and after divorce, but also married life, being a child of divorce, handling the legal aspects of divorce, dating and cohabitating, and more! Divorce has become so commonplace that it's difficult to find anyone who hasn't been affected by it in some way. In fact, recent studies show that many young people avoid marriage out of fear of getting divorced down the line. Divorce truly has an impact on society as a whole, not only the individuals who are directly experiencing it. This is why we encourage our followers to contribute personal insights, stories, and thoughts regarding divorce so that we can gather knowledge and wisdom from various perspectives to be used for future tips to help others.

2 thoughts on “Pre-marital Counseling Lowers Divorce Rates

  1. Pingback: Verbal Abuse - Tips of Divorce

  2. Pingback: Men are More Emotionally Distant in Relationships - Tips of Divorce

Leave a Reply