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The Growing Trend of Premarital Therapy for Stronger Marriages by Lisa Barrows, Psy.D.

Updated: Feb 2

The Growing Trend of Premarital Therapy for Stronger Marriages by Lisa Barrows, Psy.D., Bergen County Moms

I’ve found my person, and I can’t wait to get married! You might wonder why anyone in this boat would consider couples therapy.

Redefining Couples Therapy: A Proactive Approach

For many, couples therapy signifies a marriage in trouble or a crisis. This often-stigmatized specialization frequently begins with admissions like, ‘I can’t believe we’re here; I don’t even want anyone to know this is happening’.

Why Premarital Therapy? Insights from Couples on the Couch

Yet therapists are now seeing a refreshing contrast. Couples in love, facing clear blue sky horizons, are also entering the therapist’s office. Couples of all ages, including previously married couples, are guarding their relationships and walking to the altar (or the beach, or the garden), with more intentionality than previous generations. As adult children of divorced parents who have also witnessed many peers struggle with strained relationships, we’re not only becoming more selective but also taking more precautions.

Beyond Traditional Counseling: Tailoring Therapy to Your Relationship

Our relationships are central to our lives, and love relationships are a driving force in the meaning, value, and quality of our lives. While as a culture we still love tying the knot, it’s impossible to be unaware of the virtual coin toss that marriage now statistically represents.

Ensuring Open Conversations: The Role of Premarital Therapy

Happy couples increasingly enter our office and sit on the couch, seeking a thoughtful process before their big day. Without a specific problem, these couples recognize the importance of ‘all the big conversations’ but may be unsure where to begin, or find it uncomfortable to initiate critical topics like finances, family, and sexual expectations, even with their soul mate. Occasionally, there are specific concerns one partner feels uneasy about raising, worried these might get overshadowed by extended family involvement. Premarital therapy guarantees these essential conversations take place in a fun and exploratory manner. This is short term therapy typically done in 1-3 sessions. We’ll hit the ground running with a questionnaire you’ll be asked to complete before we meet to ensure our time is well spent and targets your priorities.

Embracing Diversity in Relationships: Our Inclusive Approach

We cater to both secular and non-secular couples, paying attention to cultural diversity and sexual orientations across all demographics. Premarital therapy is for anyone who is in love and seeking health for one of the most impactful relationships in their lives.

“You can have the same relationship with a thousand people or you can have a thousand different relationships with a single person. It’s up to you to decide.”

-Esther Perel

Dr. Lisa Barrows, is a psychotherapist at Lukin Center for Psychotherapy, specialized in treating couples, families, individuals, and parents through relational dynamics and life transitions.

As a therapist, Dr. Barrows takes an integrative approach with compassion and collaboration. Her methodologies include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), emotionally focused therapy (EFT), internal family systems (IFS) and interactive approaches. She helps her clients overcome setbacks through practical, attachment based reorientation.

Dr. Barrows has experience among various demographics. She has worked in high performing school districts as well as inpatient hospital based crisis settings for children and adults. She is trained in psychoeducational testing and has provided evaluations and advocacy for school based specialized learning and gifted services. She has supported families in Bergen County for over ten years and has conducted research in the area of sleep studies.

Dr. Barrows is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University and earned her doctorate from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Lukin Center for Psychotherapy, Bergen County Moms

20 Wilsey Square | Ridgewood, NJ 07450 | (551) 427-2458

60 Grand Avenue, Suite 104 | Englewood, NJ 07631 | (201) 403-1284

80 River Street, Suite 302 | Hoboken, NJ 07030 | (917) 903-1901

277 Grove Street, Suite 202 | Jersey City, NJ 07302 | (201) 577-8124

​51 Upper Montclair Plaza | Montclair, NJ 07034 | (973) 787-4470

128 S. Euclid Avenue | Westfield, NJ 07090 | (908) 509-8336


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