Saturday, 25 October 2008

Marriage Preparation Course 1

Because we live in one place and are getting married in another, we had to think creatively about our marriage course. We have ended up doing it in two parts: the first, a course for couples, is held at our local church. The second, the actual preparation part, we are doing with our chaplain at the church where we are getting married.

We attended the first session this week and I was more nervous than I thought I would be. Yes, parts of it are annoying, but both M and I agreed that there were a couple of useful things we could take away. This session was based on the foundations of marriage and whether we were in agreement about the state of our relationship at present. We both scored roughly the same which was pleasing, as it showed neither of us thought more or less than the other about things.

The course emphasised the very real need to spend time as a couple and to schedule this every week. (It suggested actually writing this in the diary, but that is not for us). I think M and I are lucky as we do have plenty of time to spend with each other: we live together yet have no children, so outside of our work commitments the rest of our time is either spent together, with friends or, occasionally, on our own. I know that sounds obvious, but what I mean is that our default position is to spend time together, rather than other things taking priority and spending time together being shunted down the list.

I used to be obsessed about us spending time together. Before we lived together I spent 7 months in a house share with two people I didn't know. They sold it to me as a house share, but when I moved in they had just returned from their honeymoon and my role in the house was more akin to lodger. M on the other hand was living with his best friend. Despite the fact that they lived together, every week they reserved one night for them to hang out together. I used to find that every week I was fighting for attention with all his other commitments and my favourite whine was that I never got to spend any time with him. But then we moved in together and slowly I have learnt that I do not need to be obsessed about this any more. In fact, in recent months, I have been able to let go of this obsession entirely and bingo we have started to spend one or more evenings a week together. Now all I have to do is stop obsessively using the computer every evening and the time might actually qualify as time together as per the Marriage Course guidelines (discovering how much of this you have together is our homework this week...)

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