Premarital Counseling

 An engagement is an ideal time to strengthen a relationship and prepare for a healthy, happy marital relationship, according to research on premarital counseling. This window of opportunity can even last through the first six months of marriage. Premarital counseling can reduce the risk of divorce by 30 percent. It can also help couples manage the stress of wedding planning. Premarital counseling presents an opportunity for couples to identify and resolve differences that can later cause conflict, understand each other at a deeper level, and learn skills that can help their marriage last a lifetime. 

Even if you plan to be married by a member of clergy, there may be several reasons why you would prefer completing premarital counseling with a licensed mental health counselor. I can offer specialized insight and skills that may be helpful if there is any mental health diagnosis in bride, groom, or any member of either family. I am bound to the confidentiality standards of HIPPA, and you may not feel comfortable confiding some things to a member of clergy. Clergy may also be limited in the number of premarital sessions they can offer.


My number one recommendation for premarital counseling is the one day Start Right, Stay Connected workshop I now offer twice a year. After more than a decade of providing premarital counseling with couples, I am so excited about this format, and I am now offering it twice each year. Start Right Stay Connected is a program founded on the most recent research as well as the clinical experience of hundreds of marriage counselors from around the world trained in Imago Relationship Therapy. Start Right, Stay Connected is relationship education, not therapy, and includes lectures, demonstrations, couple’s dialogues in break out rooms, and written exercises. There are opportunities for group sharing, but the seminar emphasizes partners’ sharing privately with one another. You are not required to share anything with the group except for a brief introduction and closing. In this one day workshop, engaged and newly married couples will learn:

  • Powerful communication skills
  • Practical tools for relationship “hot buttons”
  • Effective (and peaceful) conflict resolution
  • How to remove negativity from the relationship
  • How to keep romance alive, nurture, and grow your relationship
  • And we will have snacks & fun too
It is certainly the most bang for your buck at just $325 per couple, and it meets the premarital counseling needs for 90% of couples. In addition, we find that any "individual couples counseling" needed goes so much more quickly, once couples have learned the skills in this workshop. Find the next workshop dates here
For those couples that prefer individualized premarital counseling, we can utilize a typical couples counseling protocol, emphasizing important topics for premarital couples to discuss and/or we can utilize the  Prepare/Enrich program. The Prepare/Enrich program is highly valid and reliable, developed through several research studies. It includes a customized couple assessment that is completed online. The inventory addresses several aspects of relationship, personality, family of origin, and relationship dynamics; it also includes several scales that are customized for you.
As a trained facilitator, I will help you 
  • understand the results of your individual inventories,
  • explore your relationship strengths and growth areas,
  • improve communication skills,
  • understand and appreciate your individual differences,
  • identify and manage major stressors,
  • resolve conflict, and
  • develop a more balanced relationship.
Please note that the Prepare/Enrich survey will cost approximately $35. For more information about premarital or marriage enrichment counseling, please email


Wedding officiant

I can also serve as an officiant for weddings. If you are interested in having me officiate your wedding, pre-marital counseling must be completed. Please contact me for availability. You may also view a Sample Wedding Officiant Contract.