Should unmarried couples seek counseling?

Counseling
Director of A Center for Relationships Lynn Turner (C) works with a couple March 16, 2006 during a counseling session in Alexandria, Va.
ANDREW COUNCILL/AFP/Getty Images

West Virginians will be required to show certification of premarital education classes or pay an extra $20 starting June 8. How effective is counseling for unmarried couples? What are the most important things a couple should discuss going into a marriage?

"There was a big myth back when I was growing up that, fortunately, has been dispelled," said Michael Broder, psychologist, author and speaker. "It's that 'when you get married it'll all be OK' - nothing can be further from the truth. And now the word's out."

We wanted to do an in-depth segment on couples counseling after we had listener interest during a previous show.

Broder will join The Daily Circuit Thursday to talk about unmarried couples counseling.

"Pre-marriage counseling is not just teaching them to solve one issue, it's teaching them how to fish," he said, "how to resolve conflict in general."

Steven Harris, director of the Marriage and Family Therapy Program at the University of Minnesota, will also join the discussion.

"It's interesting because when you interview people, one of their top priorities is almost always a successful marriage," he said. "But they have no models. That's where education comes in... The assumption that people have a base level of how relationships are supposed to happen just isn't the case. It's a huge mistake to assume that."

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