So far in our premarital counseling overview, we have examined the importance of core values and conflict resolution in your therapy sessions. In the second part of this series, we will continue to explore topics to discuss during premarital counseling so you can set your marriage up for success.
Finances are considered a leading cause of divorce in the U.S. When couples cannot come to a decision about how to earn, spend, or save their money, they struggle to work together as a team. If you and your fiancé do not live together yet, you may not share any of your financial accounts. You need to talk about how your finances will be set up so you can avoid debt, overspending, and longstanding arguments.
- Where do our finances stand right now? Example: Retirement savings, debt, account balances, etc.)
- Will we combine our incomes or keep them separate?
- What will our monthly budget look like, including bills and personal expenses?
- Who will earn money in our relationship? (See the next section for more details)
- Who is responsible for paying the bills, or how will we split the bill payments?
- How much money should we put aside for emergency funds, college funds, personal savings, and more?
As a single person, you can go wherever your career takes you. If that means that you need to move for a better job opportunity, you can do that – no strings attached. In a marriage though, career moves have to be discussed as a family. Your new career may have a profound impact on your relationship dynamic, your location, your time with your spouse, and more. It is important to talk about these issues in marriage and family counseling so you can make sound decisions with your spouse.
- Which one of us will work? (You may both keep your jobs, or one may stay home to take care of the household and the children)
- What are our individual career goals? Example: Moving up the corporate ladder, taking on a second job, going back to school, etc.
- How do our career goals impact one another?
- Do we plan to change careers, and how will those changes affect our relationship?
- Can we adjust our work schedules to spend more time together as a family?