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Pre-Marriage Counseling

Congratulations on your final steps towards deciding to be a married couple… This is such an exciting time for your relationship!  Although you may be very happy and harmonious with your partner right now, it is important to prepare for the communication and conflict resolution skills you will need to be a successful couple… Our goal is to help you feel very confident when you walk down the aisle that you are prepared for the emotional challenges of married life without spending a ridiculous amount of money.  Some couples are having conflict and problems before marriage that they want to resolve before they make the final decision to say “I Do.”

When you select Dr. Stephanie’s Relationship Repair Shop as your Premarital Therapy provider, you have the benefit of choosing one of the Best Relationship Experts in the Metro DC region.  Stephanie has been interviewed about her program for couples on Washington DC News Channel 8 and on WBAL-11, in addition to being quoted as a relationship expert by Forbes, USA Today, and MSN.  

Benefits of Premarital Counseling

  • Couples have more time to discern if this is definitely the right partner who has similar values, goals, and dreams for marriage.
  • Couples learn relationship techniques to help them work out future problems, and they also have an opportunity to work out any problems they have been having during the engagement and dating relationship.
  • Couples are shown behaviors and attitudes that help lead to a more successful marriage, according to the latest marriage research.
  • Couples get a report of their strengths and weaknesses, so that they can objectively think about their relationship
  • Couples learn the skills to have more peaceful, fulfilling, and long-term relationships.
  • Couples develop a relationship with a couples therapist, so that if problems arise after marriage they have someone objective and knowledgeable that they can turn to for help.
  • If a couple is unsure about marriage, the counselor will not make a decision for the couple, but will make recommendations and discuss concerns with the couple to help guide them towards making a good decision.

Common FAQ about Premarital Counseling

Q. How much does Premarital Counseling cost?

A. Costs range from $60 – $200 per one hour session, depending upon the experience of the therapist that you select.  If you would like to see Dr. Stephanie at her home office in Laurel, then you will pay an up front cost of $850 for a Premarital Package that includes a PREPARE inventory and FOUR one-hour appointments with Dr. Stephanie.  After your book your first appointment at you will get an invoice emailed to you for payment.  The payment must be made in advance to hold the first appointment and all follow-up appointments.

For a more affordable cost for your pre-wedding budget, you could instead choose to attend counseling one or two times per month and pay the fee at each counseling appointment with one of Dr. Stephanie’s associates.  If you would like to see one of Dr. Stephanie’s associates for premarital counseling at a cost of $60-80 per one hour session, please contact them directly to schedule an appointment. 

Q. When to Start Premarital Counseling?

A. We have worked with clients who have a wedding date or a deadline less than a month away.  Ideally, we can work at a more relaxed pace if we start 3-6 months in advance of a wedding date, but there is no exact time necessary.  You can go to Dr. Stephanie’s scheduling calendar at to quickly and easily schedule your first appointment and follow-up appointments.

Q. How many sessions do we attend Pre marriage Counseling?

A. For most couples, four sessions is the ideal amount of time needed to review all of your strengths and weaknesses and to learn techniques that will help you have a successful marriage.  So, your package includes four one hour sessions and the PREPARE inventory.  On occasion, a couple finds that they would like an additional session(s) to finalize their counseling goals.  If after four sessions, you decide that more sessions are needed, you can certainly book additional sessions at a cost of $200 per hour with Dr. Stephanie or $60-80 per hour with one of her associates.

Q. What happens in Premarital Counseling?

A. We discuss and resolve any relationship problems that you have encountered so far, and we teach you couples therapy techniques that you will be able to use to work out future relationship issues that you will have (every couple has some).

Q. Do you use a Premarital Counseling Curriculum or Quiz?

A. Yes.  Between the first and second session, you will take the PREPARE online relationship quiz.  At your second session, you will receive the results of the Inventory, which outlines your strengths (areas of agreement) as a couple as well as your weaknesses (areas of disagreement as a couple).

Q. What is discussed in Premarital Counseling?

A. The PREPARE inventory gives a report about your agreement on many typical aspects of marriage such as conflict resolution, division of labor, finances, habits, sex, parenting, religious practices, and more.  All of these issues are discussed, and we recommend that you also discuss any other concerns or feelings that you are having about your relationship with your counselor.

Q. Are weekend and evening appointments available?

A. Dr. Stephanie only has availability during business hours, however her associates may have some weekend or evening appointments available during certain times of the year.

Q. Are there any other Premarital Resources that you provide?

A. Absolutely!  You will also receive helpful handouts during your sessions that are relevant for your counseling.  Some pastors or officiants require a letter or certificate of Premarital Counseling, and we write the letter at your final session.

We have been helping premarital couples in our Baltimore area location use PREPARE since 2006.  Many couples have learned to properly handle conflicts and repair problems.  This is a crucial skill that can save husbands and wives from endless amounts of heartache and pain in the future. 

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Dr. Stephanie's Relationship Repair Shop
9660 Iron Leaf Trail Laurel, Maryland 20723
Phone: (301) 490-1011 URL of Map