Make Your Marriage Work

A Premarital Counseling Program

happy couple

Why Premarital Counseling?

Around nine out of ten American couples desire relationships that are happy and long lasting. Many will try their best to make their relationships work but some will end in heartbreak and divorce. This is where premarital counseling helps! Over the last few decades, studies suggest that couples who complete premarital or relationship counseling/education have a higher chance of having successful and lasting unions. This does not mean that things will always go well. Far from it. But premarital programs help in several ways:

  1. They can help couples to recognize their strengths and challenges.
  2. These programs help couples get many tools to deal with trouble spots in their relationship. They also receive a list of resources for self-help.
  3. Couples grasp the value of working with a skilled relationship counselor and this increases the likelihood that they might get help to prevent relationship deterioration.

A review of effective premarital programs suggest that they should include a detailed assessment of each partner’s take on self, each other and the relationship; practice-based learning and activities and programs should be couple-centered. Make Your Marriage Work includes all of these elements and more.

couple diner                  happy couple

Who Can Use Make Your Marriage Work?

Any couple in a journey to build a long-term love relationship can use Make Your Marriage Work. We welcome couples planning a first marriage, those marrying again or those planning to live together. Couples that just want to tune-up their relationships will also find our program useful. Make Your Marriage Work can be tailored for couples of any age, sexual orientation, cultural or faith background.

 couple on water                  couple outdoors

What’s included in Make Your Marriage Work?

Around the world, The Family Institute (TFI) is known for its education/training programs in Marriage, Couple and Family Therapy. Our couple therapists are leading scholars on relationship problems and repair. This ensures that Make Your Marriage Work incorporates the best scientific information and techniques for relationship success.

Make Your Marriage work includes 6-sessions with a licensed relationship expert. Each session will last for around 45-50 minutes. Sessions can be scheduled at a couple’s convenience (for example, once or twice weekly or monthly).

Prior to attending the first session, each couple will complete a scientific assessment of couple their strengths and challenges. This assessment, called PREPARE/ENRICH, explores issues such as personality traits, communication skills, conflicts, sex, stress, family backgrounds and comfort around financial issues, as well as personal, couple and family goals. In session one, the therapist and couple will explore the couple assessment report and decide on priority areas. In sessions two through six, the therapist and couple will work actively on select topics in premarital education matched to the couple profile. The therapist will assign brief readings, video clips or discussion activities to keep the couple working between sessions

What are typical premarital topics?

Make Your Marriage Work is couple-centered, that means that couples will have a big say over what areas of relationship they wish to explore. Typical relationship topics include:

  • Becoming good friends
  • Meeting your partner’s needs
  • Affair/Divorce-proofing your marriage
  • Handling your partner’s rough edges
  • Fighting effectively
  • Communicating well
  • Maintaining a great sex life
  • Working our finances together
  • Relating well to in-laws
  • Supporting each other’s dreams
  • Growing together
  • Balancing family and work

Who are Make Your Marriage Work Counselors/Educators?

Counselors and educators in Make Your Marriage Work hold Master’s and doctoral degrees in a field related to marriage and family therapy. All are licensed in Illinois as clinical psychologists and/or as Marraige and Family Therapists in Illinois. The counseling team are also highly experienced couple therapists who are certified in PREPARE/ENRICH.

What does Make Your Marriage Work Cost?

The Make Your Marriage Work package costs $480 for 6 sessions, which can be paid in one to three installments. In addition, the PREPARE/ENRICH couple assessment and report costs $29.95, which is paid online when registering.

How can I pay for Make Your Marriage Work?

Make Your Marriage Work can be purchased for SELF or as a GIFT

  • To purchase for SELF, call 847-733-4300, ext. 898.
  • To purchase as a GIFT, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

How can I get more information?

  • Call 847-733-4300, ext. 898 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..