Thursday, November 13, 2008

How to Survive Premarital Counseling... Part 3 of 3

Saturday night we stayed out a little late (1am? Eep!), making Sunday morning a little harder for the "get up and go." It started earlier (out the door at 8:45), but it was also our last day (woohoo!), so that put a little pep in our step(s).
We started again with breakfast, then started with a talk called Marriage...In the Beginning. You guessed it, we were talking about Adam and Eve. One thing I thought was interesting was that the priest focused on the verse Genesis 3:16, which basically says, "You will long for your husband and he will rule over you."

This isn't God's command, it's his warning to us, and a direct result of the fall (along with painful childbirth--thanks, Eve.) and, scarier yet, I get it. It's like in the movie Knocked Up (stay with me here), when the Friends' guy says:

"How can Debbie like me? She likes me. I mean, she loves me. The biggest problem in our marriage is that she wants me around. She loves me so much that she wants me around all the time. That's our biggest problem. And I can't even accept that? Like, that upsets me?"

In the all-boys talk, they warned B about that-- that, when he got home from a long day of talking to adults, I might be really tired of having talked baby talk all day. So while he wants quiet, I might need adult interaction.

I can see how this would be a big thing. Even now, there are days that I just want to talk to him, to be near him, and, while he wants to talk and be near me (I mean, who wouldn't?), it's in his nature to also seek peace. Calm. Talk-free zones. I'm more of a talk-zone person myself.

The key is, so says the priest, is finding that balance. While I am more than happy to have b lead our new little family, he will also do it while keeping me (and my wants/needs) in mind. The priest said to rule is also to serve. Fine balance.

We had a talk about "true love" and, to the priest's credit, he did say that this particular talk always reminded him of The Princess Bride. The next talk was about the roles of the husband and wife in a marriage, then we had mass, which was really neat. Nothing special, per se, but just a nice time to reflect on the weekend. Plus, we got a blessing, which is always nice.

I'm not Catholic. Not sure I ever will be, but there's something about having someone literally, verbally call out to God and ask for his hand to be in your lives as a couple as you work together toward your wedding and, more importantly, your marriage. It's like my sister once said in regards to praying to the saints. "I'm not sure if I believe it does anything, but in case it does, I can sure use all the help I can get."

Now B and I have a nice certificate that we have to fax to his home parish that says we completed 20+ hours of marriage prep, which brings our church-based preparations to a close. We need only meet with his home parish to wrap things up, then get a firm answer from a priest to perform the ceremony. I'll think about that tomorrow...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


We also learned about NFP at pre-marital counseling before we were married in the Church. We experienced all kinds of outside warnings from friends and family that my wife would become a "baby factory" and began our marriage using the pill instead. Now, we use NFP according to the sympto-thermal method (couple-to-couple league), and it was one of the best decisions we ever made. Having experienced contraception and NFP, I must say that there is definitely a difference. It's a whole different level of trust and intimacy.

When taking the pill, you mentally assure yourself that it is impossible to get pregnant. Using NFP, even though the "effectiveness" is comparable to the pill, you open yourself up to the possibility of getting pregant, which requires a significantly different mindset for both spouses.

Either way, you should make this decision after a great deal of prayer about your marriage and communication with your future spouse.

You'll find that there's not a lot of room for "TMI" in a new marriage and you'll soon find out more than you ever thought you would about each other. We wish you God's blessings and a long, happy marriage!