Agreements in marriage and why they matter
Marriage, more than other types of emotional relationships, exists in a very practical realm. Because of this, efficiency often demands a division of labor in some areas. This is where domestic agreements come in. They don't have to be defined by gender but rather by choice, temperament and necessity. Of course agreements can be flexible and re-negotiated over time. This is one of the areas that we can cover together in our PreMarital Counseling sessions.
Who determines the agreements in your marriage?
The good news is that the two of you are in charge of your choice. Maybe one person does the cooking and the other prefers doing laundry. It doesn't matter who does what, but it does matter that you have a game plan. This will help you avoid confusion, chaos and power struggles.
Can I change my agreement if I don't like it?
Agreements in marriage should be flexible and evolve over time. In that regard, agreements are like clothes, you try it out to see how it fits. You get to choose.
How can PreMarital Counseling help me?
Division of labor and chores can seem like a no brainer but can end up being an unexpected stumbling block in marriage because unspoken expectations can lead to disappointment. PreMarital Counseling helps you explore this idea in advance of marriage. It will also give you the communication skills to negotiate gently when you want to tweak your agreement in a new direction after you're married.
Marital roles and children ~ How does that work?
When a Couple is childfree there is a lot of freedom to experiment with household rules and chores. Once babies come into the picture there is often a need for re-negotiating roles because there is more fatigue, more tasks and less time. The emotional negotiation skills that you learn in PreMarital Counseling will prepare you to ease through this phase with some comfort and joy.
Dona Laressa Desmond, PhD, LMFT
PreMarital Counselor & Couples Therapist