Forum: Work on initiatives to strengthen marriages

There are initiatives by the courts to reduce the pain and suffering that arise from divorces, especially acrimonious ones (Multi-disciplinary team to handle 'high conflict' divorces, July 20).

Unfortunately, this is downstream work and reactive.

I see few national initiatives to do upstream work, where we strive to strengthen marriages and prevent divorces. Should we not put our best efforts into this area?

For instance, we could consider comprehensive premarital programmes and a series of in-marriage counselling ones to help couples understand the complexities of marital relationships, how they evolve and how to continue topping up the love tank despite career and family stresses.

And since childbearing and parenting can present significant challenges to a marital relationship, we could also consider pre-parenting programmes and a series of in-parenting ones to help parents deal with the challenges of raising children in a demanding and stressful world.

Put together, these marital and parenting programmes can work in harmony to strengthen the health of the family and the relationships within.

Frank Singam

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