Felicia Onwuemele, M.Div, BScN Registered Psychotherapist (Q)
Working with couples has allowed me to understand the influence of culture on couple’s dynamics. We are all socialized by the various systems or institutions we belong to (religion, family, culture, economics). These systems can shape your norms, values, behaviours and beliefs and influence your interaction with the larger society.
In my previous post, I discussed the strong influence of family of origin on individuals and how these influences can be a source of conflict in a couple’s relationship. While this is easily recognizable by some, many would rather hold on to their belief to the detriment of their relationship. What could be the reason for this? In my experience, it is FEAR!
- Fear of losing self
- Fear of losing your voice
- Fear of losing your perceived power in the relationship.
- Fear of how the society, family or friends would perceive you
The beliefs and values you learn from your culture can influence how you relate to or engage in your couple’s relationship. For example, a man who grew up in a culture where women are seen and not heard may bring the same orientation into his couple dynamic. If his partner does not subscribe to the same idea, this will cause chaos and conflict in the relationship.
A premarital counsellor will facilitate the discussion with you and your partner in a professional manner. These discussions will give you a picture of your expectations for your relationship and the opportunity to discuss any areas of discomfort or disagreement. The ultimate goal is to have a satisfying relationship.
Marital satisfaction is a concept used to assess happiness and stability in a marriage.
Get premarital counselling before you get married!
It is dangerous to make assumptions or presumptions about how your partner would act in certain situations. Premarital counselling allows you to discuss these hot buttons and important subjects before tying the knot.
Tavakol, Z et.al, A Review of the Factors Associated with Marital Satisfaction. GMJ.2017;6(3):197-207.