Sunday, May 1, 2011

We’re Flunking Our Pre-Marital Counseling

This is not an exaggeration.
As I mentioned before, we are having a Moravian pastor marry us. She is the pastor at my childhood church in Wilmington, NC. The thing is, she is relatively new there…so she was not the pastor when I was growing up, and I have only met her a handful of times. When we started our pre-marital counseling, there was a lot of getting to know each other that needed to be done.
But before we met face to face with our minister, she asked Mr. Magic and I each to take an online survey through a program called Prepare-Enrich. I was worried it was going to be really intensive and open-ended, essay style questions, but it was actually relatively quick and painless with a Likert scale format. Here's a shot from their "About" page:
Image from Prepare-Enrich
I immediately took my quiz and then nagged Mr. Magic to take his. After that, we set up our first official pre-martial counseling session with our Minister, hereafter known as the Minister of Magic Wedding, or just Minister of Magic, primarily because there just can't be enough Harry Potter references in my life. She seems much more competent than this Minister of Magic...
Poor paranoid Cornelius Fudge, image via Giant Bomb
and much more warm and friendly than this Minister of Magic...
Never stood a chance Rufus Scrimegour, photo via Harry Potter Wiki
When we first met with her, she asked us some easy questions to warm us up. You know, like how we met. We got an F right off the bat on that one since we can't remember how we met. But then she asked us an even easier question (I'm sure she thought we were really dim witted) and asked us what we liked about each other. We both were able to answer that question - what a relief! Next, she pulled out some forms and I excitedly squealed "Oooh, do we get the results of our tests now?" I should not have been so excited.
She told us not to be alarmed...but maybe something happened while we were taking the tests? The online program had a glitch? Or maybe we marked our answers wrong? I was getting a really bad feeling about this, and then she showed us one page of our scores.
We are The Conflicted Type.
Prepare-Enrich has Four Types of Couples, apparently: Vitalized, Harmonious, Traditional, and Conflicted. You don't have to be a genius to realize that those couple types are listed from Most Awesomest to Most Awful,  or like this:
Image from Eccentric Raven's etsy shop, where apparently you can order your own OWL results!
Yes, if the Prepare-Enrich test had been our OWLS, we would have gotten a T, and never made it into our sixth year at Hogwarts in our relationship.
In particular, we scored ZEROS (out of 100, thankyouverymuch) on Communication and Financial Management. Our Minister of Magic explained that these scores are somewhat based on how similar we answered the questions (or, how similarly we communicate or handle our finances). Once she said that I exclaimed "Well that makes sense, since we do not communicate or handle finances in the same way at all." 
We ranked really high, though, on realism and satisfaction. She hypothesized that we are more realistic about our lives together because we have been together forever already, and since we both feel pretty satisfied, obviously something in our relationship is working out well for us. Just not the communication. Or the financial management. You know, two of the biggest skills needed to make a marriage work.
SIGH. I felt really down trodden after this experience, and called Bridesmaid Bunny immediately to vent. She helpfully said "Those invigorated and harmonious couples are probably really annoying anyway." So true, but of course, no offense to all you much more well-matched couples out there...haters conflicted types gonna hate.
Did you have any alarming results from your pre-martial counseling? Any more conflicted couples in the hive?

1 comment:

  1. My fiance and I took the EXACT same test for our pre-marital counseling.
    I won't tell you our score (because I don't want you to feel bad!), but we had a funny thing happen with the "realism" scores. The pastor said she had never seen results like ours before... my fiance's score was 19% and mine was 96%. Some of the things that led to his score being so low was answering "agree" to "The only thing you need to make your marriage work is love". Hahaha, oh boy.