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The Wedding’s Over. Now What? Preparing for the Rest of Your Lives Together

You’ve worked hard for as long as two years to plan your wedding. You’ve faced a lot of turmoil along the way – sleepless nights, perhaps strong opinions in how you should do things, and plans that seem to go awry at the last minute, throwing everything else off balance. You’ve successfully navigated tastings, and read through so much fine print on your contracts your eyes hurt. Somehow it all came together beautifully, and you had the wedding of your dreams! Congratulations! The next morning you wake up, and now your marriage actually begins. Now what? What comes next? Marriage is very different from dating or living together!

Dr. Gary Chapman, author of The 5 Love Languages, explains that couples invest thousands of dollars and years to prepare for their careers yet expect that the most important relationship of their lives, the one that sets the foundation for a couple’s overall success and the success of their children, will just magically happen. We hope that we’re happy together for the rest of our lives, and then bewildered when we find ourselves disconnected, feeling unloved and lonely after just a few years.

Enroll in premarital education either before or after your ceremony. Premarital education is not couples or individual counseling. It does not dive into a couples’ past to fix problems that may exist. It is truly an educational program designed to help you gain skills that will strengthen your relationship and deepen your bond moving forward. The purpose of these programs isn’t to decide if the two of you belong together, or to poke at challenges within your relationship (they exist in all marriages!), but to help you navigate through the anticipated and unexpected challenges life may present to you, and to help you build upon the strengths you already have. Couples successfully completing premarital education can experience a 30% increase in overall marital satisfaction and a correlating decrease in divorce after 5 years.

Not all premarital education programs are created equally though. When looking for a premarital education program:

  • Look for one that includes significant training in conflict resolution and communication skills.

  • Be comfortable with the person leading it and ask about their training.

  • Is the program attached to a particular religion or is it taught from a non-religious point of view?

  • What material is covered?

  • How long is the program?

  • Is it taught in person or virtually?

  • Is there homework?

All of these questions will help you find the right program for you. None of us ever hope our relationship will hit rocky roads, but those who are prepared in advance will come out on the other side even stronger than before.

For more information about the marital success education offered through Hearts Unlimited LLC, please visit

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