Barbara Currano, a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor at Alpha Omega Clinic, recently spoke to a group of over 100 young adults at the University of Maryland’s Catholic Student Center. The title of Barbara’s presentation was “How to P.I.C.K. a Partner” with “PICK” standing for Pre-marital Interpersonal Choices and Knowledge. The presentation is based on an educational program developed by John Van Epp, PhD, which is supported by ten years of psychological research. Barbara’s interactive presentation focused on the qualities of the wrong type of partner and the signs that someone you are dating might not be right for you. According to Barbara, too often couples who aren’t right for each other get married and the relationship winds up failing. The goal of the presentation is to educate young adults about developing healthy dating relationships that lead to marriage. She also explained the five elements of the Relationship Attachment Model (RAM): Know, Trust, Rely, Commit, and Touch and how these elements factor into a healthy dating relationship.

Barbara concluded her presentation with a popular “family tree” exercise in which participants wrote down on green paper leaves things that they liked about their families that they would like to bring into their marriage, on yellow leaves, things that that weren’t in their families but they would like to have in their marriage, and on orange leaves, things they did not like about their families and would not like to have in their marriage. They then pasted the leaves on a paper tree to symbolize their new family tree.  Participants shared with the group what they wrote on their leaves.

The presentation is the first in a five-part series. Barbara will present the remaining four parts at the Catholic Student Center in the spring. Alpha Omega Clinic will also host a psychoeducational/therapy group for women based on P.I.C.K a Partner beginning February 5th, 2013. For more information or if you are interested in bringing Barbara Currano’s presentation “How to P.I.C.K. a Partner” to your parish, school or organization, please contact Alpha Omega Clinic at (301) 767-1733.