Archive for July 2010

Three marriage rules you should break

July 14, 2010

For years there have been marriage “rules” passed down from generation to generation. During our 27 years of research interviewing thousands of successfully married couples on six continents of the world, we discovered some marriage “rules” that truly helped couples build lasting love. On the other hand, we also discovered marriage “rules” that are not only silly, but can even be downright damaging to building successful relationships.

1. “The more time you spend together the better the relationship.” Many couples are of the mistaken notion that they are to be constantly attentive to their spouse. While their intentions are good, their desire to be attentive causes them to, in fact, interfere with the quality of their communicative relationship with their mate. Isn’t that ironic? The recognition and practice of the absolute need for privacy and aloneness is, in our judgment after analyzing thousands of interviews, a fundamental predisposition of successful marriages.

2. “Focusing on the children is the most important part of being a parent.” Quite the opposite is true for successfully married couples who have raised great children. The quality of the relationship between mom and dad trumps everything else. Get the relationship right and good things follow. Get it wrong and lots of bad things often happen! If couples want to raise great children, they will nurture their own relationship first and foremost as they raise their children.

3. “Great sex is essential to a great a marriage.“ Over the years we have interviewed thousands of successfully married couples, and most report a reasonable degree of satisfaction with their sex life. But here is our most important research finding concerning this issue – no marriage was ever saved or made successful because the couple had a great sex life! And more importantly, when we ask successfully married couples how important sex is to the success of their marriage – to rank on a scale of 1-10 with 10 high – the average rank was only 6! Read more about sex in a marriage

It is important to understand the source of the marriage “rule” and the supporting research before putting that “rule” into practice in your relationship.

For hundreds of practical tips to strengthen your love, get the bestselling and multiple-award winning book Building a Love that Lasts: The Seven Surprising Secrets of Successful Marriage (Jossey-Bass/Wiley 2010) Available wherever books are sold. Learn more about America’s #1 Love and Marriage Experts

By America’s #1 Love and Marriage Experts
Dr. Charles D. Schmitz and Dr. Elizabeth A. Schmitz
For marriage and relationship advice visit the Doctors’ website Simple Things Matter

How to steal, lie and cheat your way to love

July 7, 2010

Steal, lie and cheat your way to loveOkay, we admit it – our favorite new love-story movie is Leap Year. It speaks to many of our research findings from the three decades we have researched successful marriage and relationships on six continents of the world.

One of our favorite lines in the movie went something like this – “May you never steal, lie, or cheat.” And before you start getting all worked up over this line, we offer you the punch line – “. . . but if you must steal, then steal away my sorrows, and if you must lie, lie with me all the nights of my life, and if you must cheat, then please cheat death because I couldn’t live a day without you.

We have to admit to loving these notions!

1. You can steal if you steal my sorrows away. One thing is for certain – when you fall in love completely, you will carry the burdens for each other. In true love stealing away your lovers’ sorrows is one of the great heists of life!

2. You can lie if you lie next to me. This notion is the essence of great love around the world – two people in love join together to form one without losing their individual identities. There is something wonderful and remarkable about having someone who lies next to you while you sleep – someone who makes you feel secure and cozy because you share a bed with someone who loves you unconditionally.

3. You can cheat if you cheat death. Near the end of our interview protocol we ask this question of each couple , “Can you imagine life without your spouse?” The answer is always the same – “NO!” Death changes everything! People in love want to cheat death for as long as they can because life is unimaginable without each other.

You see, you can steal, lie, and cheat in your marriage – under the proper conditions, of course!

By America’s #1 Love and Marriage Experts
Dr. Charles D. Schmitz and Dr. Elizabeth A. Schmitz
For marriage and relationship advice visit the Doctors’ website Simple Things Matter