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That little rhyme ‘sticks and stones’ was probably devised by denial and sustained by hopefulness. In reality if your partner said, “You’re stupid and your opinion doesn’t matter” then chances are you’ll feel hurt. These types of words are direct and overtly inappropriate. However, it is more subtle forms of communication that can be equally an issue.  

For example, you tell your partner you’re feeling really nervous about an upcoming court date and that you’re really pissed you got a ticket in the first place. Immediately after you spill all of your anxieties to them they respond by trying to fix your anxiety with remedies or even worse they scold you for speeding in the first place. It isn’t that their response is “bad” it’s simply not the response that’s best for you.  

Pre-marriage this may not show up as an intense problem that needs to be resolved, in fact you may be so in love that you ignore negative feelings about your problem-solving “sweety” and sweep things under the rug. In pre-marital counseling we do not make things into a problem. Instead we identify strengths and growth areas of each individual specific to your relationship dynamic. It is not about “good” or bad” rather the focus is on sustainability and filling the gaps of areas that you’re both interested in addressing prior to lifelong commitments. Pre-marital counseling is meant to be fun and enlightening for all parties involved. Maybe your problem solving “love bug” learns that you’d be equally pleased with just a listening ear to vent normal life annoyances like speeding tickets.