The Secret To Happily Ever After for Women

April 10, 2012

Ladies, sin came into the world through a rebellious woman. Sadly there are a lot of relationship problems today
for the same reason. So many women grew up with the notion of “happily ever after” but never gave a single thought
as to what that looked like for men.

The idea is to take care of each other and fulfill each other’s idea of happily ever after. Self centeredness is the
chief cause of marital breakups. The second most common cause of marital break ups is the lack of good conflict resolution
skills. I have several blog posts in the archives about how to resolve conflicts peacefully and I would recommend
that you check them out if you really want to get along with your mate.

But back to the happily ever after issue. Here is the very simple secret to “happily ever after”. Don’t say no
to your partners wants, needs and desires unless it is immoral, unethical or abusive. No is such an ugly word.
It implies that your wants, needs and desires are secondary to mine and I can’t be bothered with yours. You
have to understand how corrosive that is on a relationship.

There is a basic law that success breeds more success and failure breeds more failure. When you give to
your partner, it is a success for both and it tends to bring giving out in your partner which breeds more
success. When you tell your partner no, then they tend to act out in a passive aggressive manner and refuse
your requests which leads to failure and dysfunction.

Sadly I experienced failure with a woman because she initially agreed with my premise to not say no and then
broke up with me because I told her that I loved the “girly girl look” of women in skirts and dresses. Her
answer was: “no man is going to tell me what to wear”. In other words she did not care at all what I liked
and wanted, I could just stuff it and she chucked the budding relationship.

Ladies, try it my way for 30 days with the man in your life and see if you don’t have a happier more romantic
and more fulfilling life with him. Let me know how it works for you. I am praying that you all have
better and more fulfilling relationships.

Blessings on you and yours
John Wilder


How To Keep Your Marriage Strong In Spite of Kids, Have Sex More

August 26, 2011

This is another great guest post from WebMd

Raising kids isn’t easy. Do you know the keys to staying happily married with children?

By Susan Davis
WebMD Health News

Ah, the joys of raising children: The pitter-patter of little feet, the tiny plump hands slipped into yours, the first day of school…and the bitter arguments with your spouse over who gets to go to the gym after work tonight.

While children are wonderful, there’s no question that their arrival can put strains on a marriage. Between the lack of sleep, fragmented attention, and, in some cases, strained finances, parents often find themselves losing the connection that brought them together in the first place — if not fighting like cats and dogs over who does more housework, who pays more bills, and who knows best how to raise a child.

A recent study of 218 couples over the first eight years of marriage found a sudden negative aspect to measures such as relationship satisfaction once couples became parents, compared to those who didn’t. And while the researchers found that childless marriages also lose some luster over time, having babies takes the shine off faster than when couples remain child-free.

The Importance of the Marital Bond

“The writer Nora Ephron once said, ‘Having a baby is like throwing a hand grenade into a marriage,'” says Charles Schmitz, PhD. “I’ve always thought that was pretty apt.” Schmitz, who is dean emeritus of counseling and family therapy at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, and his wife, Elizabeth Schmitz, EdD, president of Successful Marriage Reflections, LLC, have studied thousands of couples in 45 countries in their search for the secrets to a happy marriage. And one of the key ones, they say, is figuring out what your priorities are and should be.

“The relationship between husband and wife should trump everything else,” Charles says. “You have to keep it strong, keep the romantic energy. Everything else comes from that. Children are beautiful, but they’re not the sole purpose of marriage.”

That’s why, they say, when married-with-children couples start to bicker or grow apart, it’s time to change the patterns they have fallen into. “We believe that sometimes you have to jolt your marriage from negative to positive,” Elizabeth says.

“If your husband comes home and you immediately start arguing about housework, you have to change the conversation. Don’t start with complaints. Start with an expression of appreciation.”

Tips for Keeping Your Marriage Strong

Charles and Elizabeth Schmitz traveled the world to study thousands of successful couples. Their book, Building a Love That Lasts: The Seven Surprising Secrets of Successful Marriage, details what they learned, including these findings:

Time in — Whether it’s a date night, a walk in the park, or going for a bike ride, “you have to spend time together to keep the flame alive,” Elizabeth says. “You have to allow time for each other.”

Time out — Conversely, alone time is also crucial. “In the best marriages, spouses allow each other time for solitude, so they can think private thoughts or just get things done,” Elizabeth says.

Touchy, touchy — Successful couples use the “Morse code of marriage,” Charles says. “It’s called touching. It’s a substitute for talking about feelings. You are saying, ‘I love you so much I have to touch you.'”

SOURCES: Doss, B. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2009; vol 96: pp 601-619. Charles and Elizabeth Schmitz, authors, Building a Love that Lasts: The 7 Secrets of a Happy Marriage. ©2011 WebMD, LLC. All Rights Reserved.


What Women Want In A Relationship and Common Mistakes That Men Make

August 3, 2011

What Women Want In Relationship and Mistakes That Men Make

What Women Want in a Relationship and Mistakes That Men Make

I have been accused by some women that I am a misogynist because I write about mistakes that women make in relationships. I do write more about that than anything else because no one else has the courage to suffer the slings and arrows that I do.
I am not anti woman or a misogynist, I am simply pointing out the common mistakes that women make in their relationships with men. It is just like Sex and The City where Carrie is clueless about men and goes to her gal pals who are equally clueless looking for answers. The problem is that they don’t have the answers. It would be like a guy going to his buddies and asking a guy what it feels like for a woman to be pregnant.

I try to be a resource for women to show them a better way based upon a lot of complaints made by men in my practice and on my blog. But to be fair, I need to take men on for the complaints that women make about men. This is only fair.

First men need to be mature. You need to be ready to commit to a relationship. You need to commit fully to it. You need to have a good job to be able to support a family.
You need to be strong emotionally and emotionally mature. You need to be strong and yet gentle respecting the woman and not trying to bully her. She is your equal and not a possession under your thumb. Never ever use your superior strength against her, it is designed to protect her not to beat her with.

You need to be ready for a family and study on what it means to be a good father as well as a good husband. You need to share the remote letting her watch her own shows in addition to your sports and blow em up movies. That means maybe also taking her to a musical , ballet, or symphony occasionally.

Be willing to go shopping with her at least occasionally and let her try on clothes while you watch and tell her what you like.

When problems arise, be willing to talk them out rationally instead of trying to bully her with shouting, pouting or emotionally withdrawing.

When it comes to sex, far too many men are about getting her done, but it really means is getting yourself done, and letting her needs go by the wayside. When it comes to orgasms, it is always ladies first. Don’t just roll over and go to sleep, but hold her and assure her that you love her, hold her and talk to her afterwards. Women want to feel loved and that you are making love with her instead of just using her as a piece of meat.
You need to be in it for the long haul and not look to other women when the going gets tough.

Well women , I invite you to share your thoughts with what I have written. Have I missed anything? Here is your time to explain what I missed. Just be nice in your comments because I was rooting for your team this time.

Blessings on you and yours
John Wilder
This is my new personal credo. Follow the link to another great blogger.

http://stewart-little.com/

The Paradoxical Commandments of Leadership
Posted on August 24, 2010 by stewartmccoy

1. People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway.
2. If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. Do good anyway.
3. If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.
4. The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.
5. Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.
6. The biggest men with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men with the smallest minds. Think big anyway.
7. People favor underdogs, but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
8. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.
9. People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway.
10. Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you have anyway.


Sexual Advice for Single Women

April 8, 2011

It is no wonder that you women are more confused than ever. You have been bombarded by multiple conflicting messages about sex and relationships. In a case of “Art Imitating Life” the TV show entitled: Sex in the City demonstrated women’s sense of conflictedness about sex and relationships. They proved to be ultimately clueless and tended to reinforce their own stereotypes. Carrie, the supposed expert on sex based upon her column was just as clueless about men and relationships as the rest of her girlfriends. This illustrates a problem in our society. We do not have any male advice columnists. If you are having trouble with a man, does it not make sense that you would go to a man for advice and counsel? The problem is, is that there are no nationally published male advice columnists.

I have confronted women’s magazine editors over the issue that their advice to women is always written by women. Invariably, these advice writers rarely confront women to tell them that they are doing anything wrong or damaging to their relationship with their man. What you get effectively from these writers is that they pat women on the bottom and reassure them that they are fine and it is the man’s fault. I will address this further in another chapter on how the feminists and the media are ruining your sex life. I will also explain the word MISANDRY in that chapter. It is a word and a concept that you really need to become familiar with and to be proactive in combating.

I differ from women advice columnists in that I am equal opportunity proponent. I take on men when they need to be confronted, and I take on women as well. I explain how each hurts their relationship, wittingly or unwittingly. If you really want to learn things and make things better in your relationship and are willing to hear critique, then I am your guy. If you just want me to be patronizing and pat you on the fanny and tell you that you are wonderful, don’t read my column.

Not only will I take on the feminists and the media, I will take on the church as well. I can do this because I was formerly a Baptist minister.

The church ignores the sexual issues that are contained in the Bible. There are numerous positive messages in the Bible about sex. There is even a school for sex mandated in the New Testament for women in how to love their husbands that you never hear preached or taught on.

According to the Bible, sex is a gift from God. All you ever hear in church are the “thou shall nots” about sex, you never hear any positive messages on sex or the positive commands about sex in the Bible.

You can’t trust the media either. All they ever want to do is print the sensational and the salacious. Truth is rarely found in the pages of the media. For example, according to the media, they often quote: “The world’s oldest profession” is prostitution. This is not even close to being true. If the media had any integrity, and believe me they don’t, they would tell you about all of the other professions that came before prostitution. You can find these professions listed in the Bible in succession: Shepherd, farmer, contractor, rancher, musician, blacksmith, hunter, boat-builder, winemaker, well digger and then prostitution. None of that of course is sensational and would not sell newspapers, so they sacrifice truth for sensationalism, expediency and profits. Trust nothing that you read in print without checking it out with numerous other sources.

Now let me give you some very important advice about sex and men, especially if you are single. Sex in dating has become so devalued that it is looked on as little more than a good night kiss. It is not a question of if, but only when you have sex with a guy you are dating.

I submit to you that you need to become much more selective about engaging in sex. Women have adapted the practice of having sex with the guy and hoping for the best. You are invariably disappointed. You are looking for that “knight in shining armor” to sweep you off of your feet. You want the “happily ever after” of love marriage and children. I submit to you that you need to get to know early on what the man is all about and what his goals are in terms of love and marriage. Often guys are just looking to have fun with a woman and have casual sex. In other words, many of them are just looking to get laid. You need to get rid of those guys before you ever let them into your bed and into your pants. You really don’t want to just be used as someone’s piece of ass.

Too many of you are so taken with romance that you don’t want to ask any hard questions up front, to your own detriment. The problem is, that for every guy that you sleep with that does not develop into a relationship, you become a little harder, more jaded and cynical and less trusting. You must guard your heart and your body. We have epidemic venereal diseases today, some of which are lifelong, or even fatal. Before you let that guy into your pants, you need to see a very recent negative Aids test and testing for all other venereal diseases like Herpes. I know that sounds very cold and unromantic, but I am trying to be pragmatic here and protect you. You need to protect yourselves. Any guy worth having will not have a problem with doing this for you. If he is unwilling, run the other direction.

The other thing is that you want to know that he has a good job that he can provide for your family. You also want to know if he is seriously marriage and family minded. What kind of father does he aspire to be? These are questions that you need to have answered before you ever engage in sex with him. If he passes on all of these questions and you are still considering sleeping with him and he still wants to be with you, he needs to pass one final test before you have sex with him. You need to ask him to read the part of this book that teaches men how to make love with you. Sadly, there is no “SCHOOL FOR SEX FOR MEN” out there to teach them how to make love with you and satisfy you. You already know from experience that what I am saying is true. Most men are just clueless about making love with a woman. Even if he is reasonably okay in bed, reading my instructions will make him fantastic in bed. Don’t you want to have a great sex life? So bottom line is to have him read my instructions and reassure you that he is willing to follow those directions in bed. If he does this, then have sex with him. This will take 3 or 4 dates to find this information out. You could take matters into your own hands and go online to dating sites and put all of this in your profile. You don’t need to date a lot of men, you need to date a few quality men that are already pre-screened by your clear description of what you are looking for in a man that is contained in your profile. Yes, I know that it will scare a lot of men off. That is my idea. You don’t need the men that it will scare off, you need the men who read it and it makes sense to them. We have a model of what a good man should look like in the Bible as listed in the following verses:

Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church, and gave himself for it;…so men out men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loves his wife loves himself. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourishes and cherishes it, even as the Lord the church;…For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh…Nevertheless, let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; Ephesians 5: 25,28,29,31,33

Likewise you husbands, dwell with them according to the knowledge, giving honor unto the wife as the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life that your prayers might not be hindered. I Peter 3:7

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking who he may destroy. I Peter 5:8

I would even encourage you to put these scriptures in your profile in describing the kind of man that you are looking for. You are then again by using these scriptures in your profile pre-screening guys that are not seriously marriage minded.

I know that you still dream of the “happily ever after”. According to David Popenoe and Barbara Dafoe Whitehead who are co-directors of the Marriage Project at Rutgers University, they have found the following factors yield the best chance at long-lasting satisfying marriage: having similar goals and interests, know each other well but don’t live together before they get married, come from intact families, marry after age 25, and are not expecting a child, similar in age, race, religion, political beliefs, education, intelligence and values. The payoff of a good marriage is personal happiness, more and better sex than singles, economic success, health and long life, and very positive benefits for the children.

This is the kind of advice that I have given to single women in my family. If you follow it, you have a much higher chance of having “happily ever after”.


16 Tricks For Hotter Monogamy

December 4, 2010

I found this article in Men’s Health. Rob was previously commenting on getting along sexually and getting the woman in your relationship to buy into having sex with you. This article explains it better than I did. I offer it as another guest post and commend it to your reading.

Blessings on you and yours
John Wilder

16 Tricks for Hotter Monogamy

Most couple reaches a point when the wild lust of exploration becomes a distant, exotic memory. Some of us, when the frisson fizzles, turn elsewhere for passion. Others remain faithful and figure boredom is the price we pay for love. Or you could reclaim the wildness of your first months.

The road to hotter monogamy is simply a matter of mind over monotony. It begins with a pledge to resist the cliché that familiarity breeds lower temperatures, a decision that you will not be doomed to a bleak future of ho-hum, twice-a-month slap ’n’ tickle, and the determination to bring the same appetite for excellence to exalting your partner’s body that you bring to every other arena of your life. Ready to bust your rut and rekindle your sex life? Here are 16 ways to keep the home fires burning.

Love Less, Want More

Energy often fades with time because we grow to love each other too much. Yes, too much. Forget all that treacle about how sex is enriched by attachment. If it were, why are you still flashing back to that tall chick from Dayton who slipped into your dorm room freshman week at Yale and Eli-ed your bulldog?

No, lust can actually be doused by caring. Once we become fully human to each other, the selfishness that arousal requires is often gentled by affection. Now, make no mistake, full-spectrum love is the grand prize of life. So the secret is to build an attachment that is both sacred—as in the sappy hearts-‘n’-flowers stuff—and profane—as in the missus welcoming you home by reenacting the Phoebe Cates—emerging-from-the-pool scene from Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

That requires two strong-hearted and self-defined people. That requires the vigorous, independent, self-reliant love of two self-actualized individuals, not the needy codependent love of one mouse for another. There has to be space between you across which a spark of hunger can arc.

In Fact, Feel Free to Hate Your Beloved

What person in a long-term monogamous relationship isn’t driven nuts by something about his or her partner? Shrinks say this is because we resent our attachment to our partners, and the anger is a way of declaring our autonomy. A couple who stay hot for each other neither deny this anger nor give in to it. They acknowledge it and move forward, trying to soften it with kindness and consideration but without shame for the feeling.

Fondle Feet

Every 2 weeks or so, when you’re watching television together, take her feet in your lap and go to work, massaging away the worries of the world. Note: This is not foreplay; it’s caretaking. If she feels cherished, she’ll get bountiful with her body—maybe not tonight, maybe not tomorrow, maybe not even this weekend, but much more over the course of a life together than she would if her feet went forgotten.

Make Memories

In the same way that nations and teams are united by events in their history, so too are monogamous couples inspired by great sexual moments in theirs. Just as the Fourth of July is an occasion of American pride, and Game 6 will forever thrill Mets fans, so will your memories of that weekend in Santa Fe or that artful quickie at Cousin Julie’s wedding give your sex life the feel of a great unfolding story.

A sex life needs an album of greatest hits, sessions that stand out from the hundreds of garden-variety get-togethers. How these landmark hookups achieve their vividness isn’t important. It can be their intensity, their location, the props involved, the food, or the music that was the score. If you don’t have such epochal events in your past—or they’re all too far in the past—get to work.

Root, Root, Root for the Home Team

One of the benefits of longevity in a partnership is the chance to enjoy sexual traditions. But be sure to think outside the narrow Valentine’s Day—wedding anniversary—Father’s Day box. Consider annual sporting events as occasions. Have your own post parade on Kentucky Derby afternoon, complete with his-and-hers mint juleps by the bedside in case anybody gets thirsty in the backstretch.

Surely, Game 1 of the World Series deserves a sexual salute. (There is a position in which both partners can see the tube.) On Election Day, celebrate democracy and America by shedding your grace on each other.

Say “I Understand, Baby” and and “Is There Anything I Can Do for You, Doll?”

If hundreds of leading universities ever did such studies, they would show that a woman who feels respected and supported is far more likely to reenact the Jessica Lange—Jack Nicholson fandango from The Postman Always Rings Twice than is a woman who feels her man is an insensitive, self-absorbed jerk. Never argue about the validity of her feelings, even when they’re totally bogus; just acknowledge them.

Of course, you can disagree with her (see above), but be careful to either actually honor her feelings or, if that’s impossible, do a damn good job of acting as though you do. Moreover, though to ears deafened by political correctness, words like baby and doll sound condescending and sexist, to most women in relationships, they sound like love.

Rely on Your Bodies

One of the misconceptions about passionate sex is that it derives from the rest of a strong relationship. A couple who listen to each other, respect each other, and share feelings are, according to conventional wisdom, better able to send each other soaring. But this is another of those chicken-and-egg deals.

Good sex can help create intimacy as surely as it can spring from it. Our culture tends to disrespect the wisdom of our bodies and defer to the far less dependable wisdom of our minds. But our bodies and hungers can connect two people in elemental ways, making them susceptible to each other’s spirits. Submitted for your consideration: As surely as a vigorous sexual life is a result of a good relationship, it’s also a prerequisite for one.

Let Sex Heal

Sometimes when you get mad—no, make that when she gets mad—sex is deliberately withheld, as a punishment for perceived slights. Bad plan. This weaponizes lust. Your sexual loyalty to your partner has to be stronger than some small oversight, like neglecting to call when you were going to be late. Moreover, sex can be just the medicine you need. Touch helps you work your way back to each other. Our hips and hands are sometimes smarter than our brains.

Remember Pitcher Greg Maddux at His Best

Okay, maybe the future Hall of Famer isn’t the sexiest image of all time. But this will help: Change speeds and change locations.

Use Your Tongue

Though we’re uninhibited about things we’ll do to each other, we’re often sheepish about talking about the things we just did. Happy monogamy requires that we get over our shyness and speak freely about what we like and don’t. Sure, we have to put things gently, but we have an obligation to be our own advocates, to tell the truth. Death to prissiness! Be a role model for her. Ask her what she likes and, ahem, likes less.

Now, you have to be prepared to learn that she actually hates the Nigerian Swirl that you have been deploying with such smugness for all these years. But that’s a small price to pay if suddenly everybody’s being candid and sexual yeas and nays are flying all over the room. Two people can love each other very much, but if there’s no frankness about what they dig and what they don’t, there’s little chance that sex will grow richer and deeper and hotter.

Speak of Her Glories

Make sure she knows how beautiful she is and how sexually skilled she is, especially if she isn’t—sexually skilled, that is. All women are beautiful, and people often grow into expectations.

Set Sex Free

In the early days of a partnership, the word sex usually means that some body part is inserted somewhere, and it most often includes at least partial nakedness. But as time goes by, the couple who would keep things exciting takes sex out of the bedroom and broadens its definition to include all kinds of touching. Now, this is no call for just cuddling; a man’s entitled to want everything he wants.

But expand your physical life together to include all the ways a man and woman might touch/endorse each other: a quick make-out session in the laundry room, a supportive shoulder squeeze on the way out the door, a fondling here, a grope there, a caress, a head in a lap, a pinch of an ear, a tender tap. When touch is set free from the ghetto of orgasm, the purposefulness of intercourse drifts through every cove of our connection. This validation turns kittens into tigers, once the kids go outside to play.

Use the Whole Field

If you’re Joe Suburb, that’s not a deck behind your house; it’s an arena. One redwood chair, one lap, maybe a leaf tarp if modesty requires, and—presto!—you’ve got yourself an autumnal invigoration, complete with crickets and intimations of first frost. And your car is more than transportation; it’s a time machine back to the thrill of high-school hallelujahs.

Get Over This Mood Thing

Monogamous relationships often founder because one partner feels free to demur because she’s not “in the mood,” leaving Mr. Faithful, who has, alas, “forsaken all others,” with nowhere to turn with his need. “The mood” is greatly overrated, and if a couple is going to stay happily monogamous, there will have to be some sex had by people who are not exactly “in the mood.” This doesn’t mean that a partner can never demur. A throbbing headache gets you a pass. So too does violent nausea. Or if you’ve received news of a loved one’s death within the last half hour or so or been treated disrespectfully by the petitioner within the last 3 or 4 hours, take a pass all you want.

But not being “in the mood” is death if you expect to keep a relationship warm and energetic. Just like the Highlander, your physical relationship needs some routine maintenance. You go to work when you’re not “in the mood.” You go to the gym when you’re not “in the mood.” When we accept a person’s promise of monogamy, we take on a duty. Come on, take one for the team.

Be a Beast

The hectic pace of life is centrifugal, urging a man and a woman away from each other into separate orbits of less important obligation. But in couples who remain durably warm, Tristan and Isolde always find their way back to each other, if only for a refresher moment every now and then. Make a habit of breaking out of the routine interactions of coming and going by every so often focusing powerfully on her and telling her you love her. Hold her strongly by the arms and command the rest of the world to recede.

There’s a bubble around the two of you, and all that matters in this instant is your fierce love for her. Don’t just say it; add a whisper of growl. You love her like a wolf. Yeah, yeah, sure, your love is deepened by her character and kindness and wit, but its origin had nothing to do with her traits. And yeah, yeah, sure, she’s a good mother, a great cook, a loyal friend, but guess what? Passion doesn’t need a reason. It just is—like the wind in west Texas. Don’t actually say any of this stuff about wolves or west Texas; you’ll frighten her. But if your attitude asserts the wildness of your taste for her, she’ll feel safe.

In the end, the most powerful sex secrets aren’t in technique, in learning to use your fingers like a French flutist or your tongue like an Asian lizard. The secret to keeping the pepper in your pas de deux is to stand up for the primacy of physicality in your life together, resisting the cultural conspiracy that dis-respects your taste for each other and tries to make it a bit player in your passion. Your longing for each other can enrich all of your feelings.

If we lived in a less cynical age, a fellow might argue that monogamy is your best chance at a fevered sex life. A fellow might argue that though it is deprivation of a kind, it’s also an invitation to develop expertise, a chance to take pride in knowing that a certain whimper means “just right,” and that she prefers feathery in the morning but fortissimo at night. A fellow might feel lucky to recognize a certain cadence of hips and offering of lips. A fellow might be glad that she knows his secrets.

Monogamy isn’t beanbag. It takes discipline and love and energy and is best not tried by nonserious men. But done right, the conspiracy of just two is sanctified by its focus, made big and bold and daring by the sheer size of the bet.

All the chips on one number. How’s that for exciting? Spin the wheel.


Compare Your Marriage To Others To See If You Will Last

November 11, 2010

Here is yet another great post from Life Gems/Marriage Gems. Lori Lowe is the author and researcher on this blog. She does great research on what makes for good marriage.
Here is the link to her blog;

http://lifegems4marriage.com/2010/11/10/the-5-marriage-types-and-their-risk-of-divorce/#comments

A physician friend of mine recently enjoyed two visits with patients and their spouses in long-term marriages. One patient was 95; his wife was 93. They recently celebrated their 75th anniversary together, for which there is no “golden” or “platinum”. He was amazed at their longevity, something rarely seen today. A second couple had been married 60 years, and he asked them the secret to their success. She smiled and quipped, “Well, I’m blind, and he’s deaf…that really helps a lot.”

All humor aside, you know I’m all about research that can help determine what makes a marriage successful. A 30-year U.S. study by E. Mavis Hetherington on marriage and divorce identified that there are five types of marriages, and rated their respective odds of divorce. The details can be found in the book For Better (Or Worse): The Science of a Good Marriage. It was reported in an article titled “What makes a healthy, happy marriage?” in The Times of India.

The two marriage types most likely to remain stable over time are:
The cohesive/individuated marriage—For these couples, marriage is a refuge for the husband and the wife—a place of renewal, support, affection and companionship at the end of each day. It has the second lowest divorce rate.

The traditional marriage—Boasting the lowest divorce rate of all five types, these couples recognize the male breadwinner and female homemaker roles. The success of a traditional marriage means both partners are happy with their roles, perform them well and feel respected by their partner.

The three styles at highest risk of divorce:
The pursuer/distancer marriage—In 80 percent of cases, the woman is the pursuer, and the man is the distance. Generally, she likes to confront or discuss issues, while he withdraws and avoids confrontation. Over time, both partners tend to get fed up.
The disengaged marriage—This couple lacks mutual affection and support. While they rarely argue, they don’t need one another on a daily basis.

The operatic marriage—This couple has dramatic highs and lows, is emotionally volatile, enjoys great make-up sex, and has the highest sexual satisfaction level. The marriage may end when one person (typically the husband) decides the passion isn’t worth the constant conflict.

I’ve never really thought of categorizing marriages into just a few boxes like this, and I’m not sure all marriage types are included. I would describe mine as falling under the cohesive type, and I do like the visual of viewing your marriage as a refuge against the stresses of the world. Do you feel your style or type of marriage is adequately described on the list? What would you add?


Do You Believe That You are Loved

November 5, 2010

Lori Lowe and her Life Gems Marriage Gems is the most frequent blog that I repost on my blog. I am trying to get her additional readers as she is always good and has good things to say or good research to bring to the table. Here is the link to go to her blog.

http://lifegems4marriage.com/2010/11/03/do-you-believe-you-are-loved/#comments

It’s not always better to give than to receive. Sometimes learning to receive is more important. Some of us undermine gifts of love, and we may not even realize it. CNN and Oprah.com recently reported on the difficulties some of us have with receiving love. It’s as if we don’t truly feel worthy of the gift. If you’ve ever wondered if your partner really loves you, perhaps you can relate.

The problem is that our inability to recognize acts of love or accept how much we are loved can create a self-inflected isolation and harm our relationship, say the authors of Receiving Love. The married authors and marriage counselors—Harville Hendricks and Helen LaKelly Hunt—were near divorce when they realized this critical problem in their relationship, and learned to fix it.

How might you be undermining love? By not responding to supportive comments (or responding sarcastically). By requesting more affection, but resisting the affection when it is offered. By not accepting offers of help, even when you are overwhelmed.

The authors explain that most people believe if they do a better job of giving to one another, their romantic relationship will remain strong. The missing link, however, may be that we must learn to better receive the gifts our mates are already giving us. For example, if one partner is encouraging, loving, complimentary and affectionate, yet those actions are not well-received, the rejection can certainly harm the relationship. Even if you don’t rebuff your partner, but you act in a blasé or unbelieving manner, the effect can be the same.

 Following are some questions suggested by the authors to determine if this could be an issue for you: Do you assume your partner is not being sincere?

 Do you deflect praise?

 Do you criticize your mate for not saying something “right” or at the right time or place?

 Do you feel embarrassed by compliments or by displays of affection?

 Do you harden your heart or mind to positive comments?

If so, these can be signs of self-hatred, that could be engrained since childhood, say Hendricks and Hunt. Even if you wouldn’t call it self-hatred, maybe you’d agree that you dislike parts of yourself?

How can you overcome the inclination to devalue yourself? It’s a bit complicated. “You can’t consciously achieve self-love by loving yourself. To end self-rejection, you have to learn to love in another what you hate in yourself,” says Harville. If you’re unsure what qualities in yourself you dislike, pay attention to what you repeatedly criticize in others. “Self-love is born out of love of another,” he explains.

As you learn to more completely love your partner, this allows you to receive more love. It also requires giving up a victim mentality and letting go of criticism and judgments you received from others.
Be open with your spouse about when and why you struggle with their gifts of love. Be empathetic if your partner is trying to grow in this area, and reinforce your support and love for them so they have a safe emotional place in the marriage.
This honesty can help you grow in intimacy. Speaking of intimacy, I found this post from Journey to Surrender on “Intimacy—As Much as You Want” very helpful and interesting. I recommend checking it out.

Do you ever find yourself wondering if you could be loved as much as your spouse claims to love you, or deflecting compliments? Do you sometimes feel like your gifts of love are rejected by your partner? If so, it may be time to discuss how this affects your relationship. Linking to the article or reading the book may also benefit you.


%d bloggers like this: