Pre-marital counselling, a must


Lord of Penmai
Jul 5, 2011
Pre-marital counselling, a must

An engaged couple lays out its anxieties to a marriage counsellor before the wedding

The initial period of any relationship is called the honeymoon period; and after that fairytale, marriage can be a rude reality check. In most cases, quarrels over money, family and trust break a couple apart. Mikhail Shahani and Reshma Rajwani wanted to go into their marriage with eyes open and decided to undergo a pre-marital counselling session to know what to expect. The 27-year-old chef and 26-year-old management graduate come from different backgrounds and met only six months ago. Shweta Kansara from Mind Temple clinic says, "A pre-marital session helps partners accept each other better and avoid future complications or conflict."

Getting started
Asked why they're getting married, Reshma says, "I live in Mexico and was introduced to Mik on a trip here. After I left for Mexico, we continued communication and fell in love. The distance was hard and the pressure from families, intense. So we decided to get married in 2012." Mikhail says, "We were constantly fighting because of the distance. So we figured, if we've decided to get married what's the point of waiting longer. Reshma's family is conservative and her father was unhappy she was marrying a chef - he had an old-school view of 'bawarchis'. Once they met me, things eased up."

Rough corners
Shweta asks them where they expect conflict and what is expected of them. Mikhail says Reshma is short-tempered. "It is true that I get agitated and tear up instantly," she replies. "I like to be left alone in such a mood." Mikhail says, "I can't leave her alone if I know she's upset and try to cheer her up." He adds that she may take time to get used to the Indian culture.

Reshma says, "Mikhail lives with his mother and they are very close. She is a cool, forward-thinking lady but staying with her may bring in its set of concerns." Mikhail says he worried about finding someone who wouldn't be able to adjust to his family. "My mother, sister and I live together and I was always very afraid of someone creating a divide. But seeing how Reshma has adjusted and how fond my family is of her, really eases my worry."

Counsellor speak:
It is essential to discuss roles, baggage and unresolved issues if one wants the partner to accept and support him/her. If Reshma is short-tempered, her childhood issues could be the cause. While feeling angry is natural, how we express it is learnt from our environment. The couple went through a few exercises.

A. Descriptive writing
Reshma and Mikhail were asked to write a few lines on each other. While he wrote an essay in a heartbeat, she paused to get her thoughts in order. She brought up his laidback attitude to health.

This exercise helps the couple see how the other person views them. They should tell each other if they've missed anything out or if they disagree on something.

B. The big six
While talking about religion, lifestyle, sex, children, behaviour and recreation, they agreed on most things but had trouble in the financial aspects. Reshma says, "Mik needs to buy a good brand to feel his money is well spent and finds my thrift shopping a waste of money."

Mikhail replies, "She spends so much money trying to source the cheapest thing, it seems pointless. I just look for the best value for my money."

By discussing each of these topics in detail, the couple ensures sensitive subjects are talked about and the partners know where the other stands. Agreement on religion and lifestyle help deal with the changes that a new family and home will bring. Sex and children are crucial subjects for family planning and keeping intimacy alive. A couple should discuss how long it would like to wait before having a child, birth control options and the plan for the lifestyle change. It is also important to discuss how one behaves with the other in private, in front of famly and in public.

Cranking game
Shweta drew up another list with the following heads -Family, career, self, friends, health (physical and emotional), purpose of life and money. She asked the couple to rate each category on a scale of 10 and then rank according to priority on in their own lives. They were then asked to introduce 'Partner' as a new category and carry out the ranking again. While Mikhail placed his family, partner and career in the top three slots and reserved health for a latter ranking, Reshma gave health and family a high ranking with self and career set a little lower.

Discussing discrepancies, Shweta says, "It's important to level out on most subjects so that the relationship is on an even keel. One's priority of self needs to have more importance."

What it does:
Prioritising these heads in front of each other helps the partners know the challenges the other is facing at the time. It helps them acknowledge their weakness and helps the other step up and be more accepting and supportive.

Reshmi V

Banned User
Apr 13, 2012
My sister is getting married this may and summer months are a pain to get married in, but that's God's wish, right? The groom and bride have already attended their various sessions of counselling. Now it is time for grooming. My sister has been using the new summer variant from Parachute. It is light and rejuvenating. The mint extracts are making her fair by the day and she smells great as well. After I suggested, even the groom has been using this. It is a great unisex lotion. All you bachelors and bachelorettes, do try this out!

Similar threads

Important Announcements!

Latest Posts

Type in Tamil

Click here to go to Google transliteration page. Type there in Tamil and copy and paste it.