Facilitating Open Couple Communication Understanding and Study (FOCCUS)
The FOCCUS Inventory is a useful tool for marriage preparation and is used by many priests, celebrants and educators who are helping to prepare couples for marriage.
The FOCCUS Inventory is an aid for marriage preparation. It can help you study, understand and communicate openly about many things that are important to your relationship. FOCCUS is not designed to predict marriage success or failure, nor is it a test. It is designed to facilitate the process by which couples have an opportunity to explore the strengths in their relationship and the areas that they wish to develop further.
FOCCUS works on two levels:
- Couples individually read and consider a series of statements about relationship issues and then mark a response that most appropriately reflects what they think and feel about the issues addressed in the inventory
- A trained facilitator works through the Inventory with the couple after identifying the issues that require further discussion
There are a number of themes that run through the Inventory. Some are:
- Commitment – how can we build our marriage through a number of stages to greater richness over 40/50 years? How can we grow and learn to cope with growth and change?
- Family of Origin – when we are relaxed or under stress we act out of early learned behaviour that feels natural;
- Two career marriage – how can we live our marriage richly when we both work and have so many competing interests?
- Communication – the overarching emphasis is whether the couple has talked about all of the issues raised in the inventory.
- facilitator works through the inventory with the couple after identifying anything that requires further discussion.
The REFOCCUS Inventory is a marriage enrichment tool, designed to help couples think about, understand and discuss their relationship. Covering 6 major areas; Marriage as a Process, Intimacy, Compatibility, Communication, Commitment & if relevant Ministry Marriages. REFOCCUS© Inventory does not measure the quality of a couples’ relationship; rather, it helps affirm what is strong in the marriage and helps couples explore areas ready for growth and/or problem solving.
The REFOCCUS process involves
- Couples individually read and consider a series of statements about relationship issues. These statements invite agreement or disagreement on the part of each respondent. The questionnaire takes approximately one and a half hours to complete.
- The couple begin to think and talk about the inventory and make decisions.
- At the completion of the inventory a time for a feedback session is arranged with a trained facilitator. The facilitator works through the inventory with the couple after identifying anything that requires further discussion.