After completing the Mr and Mrs Quiz we were pleased to score 11 points and we learned we knew quite a bit about each other.
We learned that loyalty and feeling comfortable with each other were some of the key reasons we decided on marriage as the next natural step. We both learned that the main reason for us getting married was that we were bet tochange either person because ater as a team than as individuals. We realise that while we both have negative points and that we recognise this in each other we are prepared to take the rough with the smooth as we know that no-one is perfect.
Through completion of the booklet and watching the DVD we learned that honesty and open communication is very important. We both agreed that we don’t want nor expect marriage to change either person because we are marrying each other for the people we are now but are open to evolving with time. We can grow together in marriage. We learned it is extremely important to make time for each other during our busy lives. We learned that it is vital to share responsibility and make joint decisions. We also learned it is vital to try and be supportive and understanding of each other even when there is a difference of opinion. We both felt that the other would be a good parent as we agree on how we feel we should bring them up if we are blessed in this way.
We realised that it is important to find a healthy balance between spending quality time together with spending time with other family and friends. We agreed to work together at all times on financial matters and budgeting issues. Through engagement with the course and discussion arising from that engagement we realise that while having children would be important to us but if it didn’t happen we would be open to other possibilities. Arguments don’t solve problems but only create more issues and it is preferable to have frank and open communication and mature conversations. The family relationship and dynamics between in laws must be considered and we are lucky that both families are mutually supportive to us both. We both feel welcomed by our future parents in law.
Communication can be conveyed through body language as well as dialogue. We also learned the it is important for fathers to spend at least 1 hour with children playing daily in the formative early years as it helps children’s self esteem and confidence. Small and thoughtful acts of romance help keep the romance alive.
Jennifer Swail & Daniel Nixon
I think we learnt quite a bit from the program. First and foremost, we learnt that we seem to be well suited to each other.
There were no major surprises when we compared our answers for the different exercises and we both got good scores for each other on the first exercise. One thing that come out of the first exercise is that it both made us think a bit more about what we’d like to achieve in life so we learnt something ourselves and about each other. Aside from that, we both learnt a bit more about our respective families that we didn’t know before. We learnt that we probably need to bring a bit more romance back into the relationship (we’ve been together for almost 10 years) so we both agreed to make more of an effort in this area, particularly after we’re married. Learning about the ‘good’ way to have an argument (start of quietly, know the outcome, etc.) was good.
We rarely argue as we’re both quite passive and easy going and good at talking things through but perhaps on the rare occasions we disagree knowing a ‘good’ way to argue is a useful tool. Also, the 5 good interactions for every bad interaction is a good thing to aim for. Overall though, I think we were happy with how we got on. We think communication is key and we do communicate very well with each other. We have dinner almost every night at the table and leave our phones/tablets to the side, so getting each other’s undivided attention is very easy.
Kind regards, Garrett & Paula
We found this to be very beneficial. It covered topics thoroughly, and offered some extremely helpful tips and stats from professionals.
They did an awesome job of covering conflict as well as trying to get your partners attention. They emphasize how it’s important to realize that no one is perfect and to stay mature. Also in marriage it is easy to blame your partner for issues you might be encountering together, but it’s extremely interesting to hear the psychiatrist say that most people’s marital issues stem from issues they had as children. Also it’s important to note that people tend to find spouses that are most like their parents, (both good and bad traits!).
With that said, couples must be careful to make sure we aren’t focusing on the negative traits and focus on how we can improve that aspect within our current relationship. Parents who criticize or push to overachieve leave kids with general anxiety, and can make them feel the need to overachieve in life, or think that things aren’t good enough. We feel this was a very important element. The last video was interesting.
We learned how families (in-laws) can affect your relationship with your partner and your kids. Although we are newly engaged, it’s extremely important element to emphasize and hone in on BEFORE we have children. This was a beneficial course, and loved the variety of content.
Thank you! Jennifer P. von Ruden
We both actually really enjoyed it… really made you sit and think and talk.
Since completing the course last week, we have found ourselves discussing issues rather than just doing. I still firmly believe our relationship is perfect – and by the answers compared, we do both think very alike which was nice to see also…. and we both want the same from our relationship and in our future together.
Eugene wouldn’t be inclined to show too much affection to the boys based on his childhood… but from watching the videos, he understands that it is ok, that it is necessary and that for our children to follow suit that it is important to show them from example. One thing I learned is not to use past examples in current discussions…. I am going to try hard to stop this in future! I actually think that it would be good to do the questionnaire every couple of years, as a refresher and reminder of what’s important.
Kindest regards, Ciara Parletti
We both learned that marriage is many things. Marriage is about compromise and putting your partner’s needs ahead of yours. Marriage is seeing your partner as an equal and making sure that each of you has a say in what is happening in your lives. Marriage is not always going to be a picnic but you need to move through the rough times as partners.
When it comes to conflict make sure that you are not saying always or never and you are not bringing up past arguments. Also, know that you need to put yourself in your partner’s shoes. Your partner may not be in a positive mood because of something that happened at work or in their day. There are many things that also affect our marriage. For example our family and having kids. Through this all we need to always remember our love for one another and that we are both committed to our wonderful lives together. From the very first four pages there were things we did not know about each other. We really liked that because even though we have been together for 7 years it was something new that we were learning about each other.
We enjoyed the exercise in which we listed reasons we are getting married other than love. It was a challenging experience in which we highlighted our similar values, life goals and compatibility. We also liked the deserted island exercise. It really showed us that although we picked and ranked mostly the same objects, there were a few that we talked about and got each other’s perspective on. Lastly, we liked watching the additional video because it talked about how God ties into our relationship. Our marriage is about commitment just like God is committed to us. These exercises and videos had us talking about things that have not been said before. We talked about our parent’s relationships and our own relationships.
We talked about our goals and our needs from each other. Overall, we really did learn more about each other and what our future had in store for us as a married couple.
Thank you for emailing us back! We really appreciate it! Kayla and Justin
We are quite different people (we are definitely in the “opposites attract” category!) but a lot of our answers & responses ended up quite similar which was very reassuring to us both. I learned that my family had and still has more of an influence on me then I would have thought so now that I’m aware of it I can work on not letting it interfere with my relationship with Seamus.
Seamus found a lot of benefit in the communication section and while he was initially cringing at the scenes with the couple acting out scenarios it was a great way to demonstrate how an argument can spiral very quickly out of seemingly nothing. Nice fact in there about the tone of your voice being very important also.
To be honest (and maybe like a lot of couples) we were doing it because we “have to do it” and wouldn’t have opted to do this course if it wasn’t mandatory, but I’m really glad that we did. It definitely prepares you more for the realities of marriage, no matter how prepared you think you might be there is always something to learn.
Thanks! Ciara O’Hanlon & Seamus Farnan, Vancouver, Canada
We both feel we learned a number of things about each other that we perhaps weren’t aware of beforehand and a number of skills too.
For instance, we have an additional view as to why we are getting married. We understand that its not just about love, there are other elements. We learned how to work through disagreements and now understand that we may have been doing this incorrectly in the past.
We also learned that some of our traits in the relationship come from our parents. We learned that we come from tow different family types. however we both get on with our soon to be in-laws. (99% of the time anyway!!)
We think that we are already a good family unit (just the two of us) as we always share our burdens, financially and emotionally. Steve enjoyed the last task (MacGyver V Lost) as he watches far too much Bear Grills. We did learn from that task to compromise on some of the items the chose together that maybe we wouldn’t have beforehand.
Thanks & Regards, Debbie & Steve, Skerries, County Dublin
Myself and my fiance have just completed the online Avalon pre-marriage preparation course and I just wanted to thank you and say what a positive experience it has been. We were both so pleasantly surprised with how relevant, modern and comprehensive the course content was- not what we were expecting at all!
I had reservations at first about how meaningful it would be to complete an online pre-marriage course but now I actually feel it provoked a truly in-depth discussion between us as we worked through each section at our own convenience and took our time to chat about the various reflections that arose from each. The “his & her” workbooks were fantastic conversation starters!
The course has a really strong spiritual emphasis which was very important to me however, the guidance and advice from a range of experts was invaluable also. It strikes a perfect balance in preparing couples for the religious sacrament of marriage and the everyday challenges they are likely to face.
My only regret is that we did not complete the course sooner as the advice, videos and tools provided to help couples plan for a wedding would have been extremely useful in our early planning stages… particularly the budgeting tool!
I want to thank you also for how promptly you replied to any of my queries along the way. I will be recommending the Avalon pre-marriage course to any of my friends getting engaged without hesitation.
Kindest regards, Niamh O Donnell
We found it extremely helpful!
The topics that were brought up for discussion were things that we didn’t realize we needed to talk about. It really helped us to understand each other better and how we can improve on working through differences. Thank you so much!