News: PREP course helps service members, spouses maintain healthy marriage
Story by Lance Cpl. Shawn Valosin
MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - Service members and their spouses gathered at the Religious Education Center aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C., Feb. 26-27 for a marriage Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program [PREP] workshop.
The program was developed by three professors at the University of Denver more than a decade ago, and is still being updated and built upon to continue helping spouses maintain and enjoy their marriages.
“PREP helps couples understand each other and work together harmoniously instead of just pulling against one another,” said Cmdr. Ken Counts, the chaplain for Combat Logistics Regiment 27, 2nd Marine Logistics Group. “Evaluations [of PREP] have shown that, in the long run, couples who completed the program report improvements in the quality of their marriage as well as reduced divorce rates within the first three to five years after marriage.”
The two-day day workshop consisted of speeches from guest speakers, mini lectures, exercises and discussions on topics related to marriage enhancement, such as; communication, conflict management, forgiveness and expectations.
Counts stressed the fact that the workshop was not necessarily for couples who are struggling in their marriages, but was for spouses who want to continue having great relationships and keep building upon their foundations.
Sgts. Timothy and Cara Parish said they have wanted to attend the workshop ever since they got married, and were glad that the opportunity finally presented itself.
“It’s built on very solid academic interviews, studies, and proven evaluations over the 16 years,” said Counts.