The Marriage Podcast for Smart People | from OnlyYouForever | Because Marriage Should Be Forever
Summary: You’re not satisfied with your marriage. You’re afraid of ending up alone--but married. Or maybe you fear losing your marriage entirely. Look, we know how tough marriage can be but, like you, we believe marriage should be forever. Many have told us that these weekly shows have helped them to create a marriage they love today and they’re going to treasure for a lifetime. You can see their comments in our reviews. Listen, you don’t have to be unhappy in your marriage. Or alone. Or even considering divorce. Start your marriage towards enjoyment and security today: first, subscribe to our podcast. Second, get our worksheets and other bonus content by email. Third, build a thriving, passionate marriage! Who are we? Caleb has his Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy and brings you solid, research-based marriage advice once a week through this show. Verlynda keeps his two feet firmly planted on planet Earth! Together, we bring you The Marriage Podcast for Smart People from OnlyYouForever.com.
Trauma can affect your marriage in a variety of unseen ways, and sexual difficulties and aversions as a result of trauma are very common. For women, this often looks like deeply ingrained beliefs in their own unattractiveness or in sex as something to be avoided and feared rather than enjoyed. For men, trauma can result in a variety of sexual dysfunctions, including decreased libido and total aversion to sexual relations. Marriage is the perfect place to rebuild your ability to trust and feel intimacy, but it has to be slow and gradual process where both partners are involved. Understanding the impact of trauma and working to slowly re-establish intimate physical connection in a safe and loving context can heal the pain and damage caused by trauma and restore harmony to your sex life.
It is often said within Christian circles that sex is better and more enjoyable when kept within marriage. There is unquestionably a Biblical argument that marriage was designed by God to be enjoyed by committed, lifelong married partners. But secular research on sexual satisfaction shows the exact same thing: sex is almost always more rewarding and pleasurable when shared with a single married partner. Why is this? Creating an exclusive sexual relationship increases your investment in your partner, which increases your incentive to develop your emotional and sexual intimacy, which naturally increases your ability to bring each other pleasure. The longer you stay with a single married partner the better you will become at sharing sex that is enjoyable for both of you. Sex within marriage is also viewed as sacred and can be enjoyed without guilt. Investing more in the sexuality of your marriage will always lead to better sex as you continue to grow alongside your partner.
Gary Chapman's Five Love Languages is a popular way of thinking about the ways we give and express love. It has gained widespread popularity and helped many couples think more clearly about the way they show love and use actions to maintain their relationships. But the research shows that not everything about this theory should be accepted without hesitation. Close examination has found that having a mismatch in your Love Language as a couple doesn't actually have any impact on marital satisfaction. Not only that but thinking of love only in terms of actions and trying to fill your spouse's "love tank" can open the door to self-centered or even manipulative behavior. Love is expressed in actions, but it is so much more than that too. Love is an emotion which needs to be felt before it is acted upon. And perhaps this core of love as an emotion is more important that exactly which types of action you use to display it.
Dealing with a betrayal in your marriage can be as painful and world-shaking as recovering from post traumatic stress disorder. Betrayed spouses often feel intense fear, anger, sorrow and rage, while reliving the painful memories and withdrawing into themselves emotionally. Betrayal shakes us to our very core, making us question the basic assumptions we have about life like "I can trust my spouse" and "I am safe". These fundamental truths which we need to function are suddenly pulled out from under us, leaving us stunned and unsure how to recover. Counseling can help you face the trauma that a betrayal causes and work through three important steps— re-establishing your safety, consciously deciding to remain in the relationship, and working towards healing and reconciliation through forgiveness.
Deciding whether to leave an abusive marriage or stay in the hope that things improve can be one of the hardest decisions you ever have to make. Research shows that a decision to stay can be influenced by your attachment to your partner and your belief that he can change, as well as the fear of retribution and whether you have adequate support in place to cope after leaving. Deciding to leave can often be based on fears for your safety or that of your children. Spotting when abuse is escalating or when your partner's behavior poses a threat to your life can be a clear sign that it's time to call it quits. Whichever path you choose, research shows that making a definitive decision leads to far better outcomes than going back and forth between leaving and returning. Whether you decide to stay or leave it's important to frame it as your choice to make based on your own freedom and strength.
If you are in an abusive marriage you may be wondering whether your husband can ever change. Should you stick it out in the hope things will get better or are some problems too deeply ingrained to ever fully go away? Research shows that physical abuse can be stopped through effective counseling and interventions, but that emotional abuse is harder to eliminate. Findings also show that your own predictions of whether your marriage can recover are accurate more often than not. If you want to try and improve things in an abusive marriage there are steps you can take to minimize the effect of abuse on your life, re-invent the terms of the relationship and take back control.
An abusive marriage can be one of the worst situations you can find yourself in. But abuse isn't always as obvious and direct as a balled up fist. There are lots of situations which should be labeled as abuse which aren't, and some situations which are incorrectly assumed to be abusive in nature. In this, the first part of our mini-series of episodes on abuse, we look at how to identify and define different forms of abusive behavior. Abuse can include any form of physical violence and a whole range of emotional and psychological behaviors. This can include insults, forcing your partner to be isolated or subservient, belittling their opinions or controlling different aspects of their life. There are also three important criteria to separate isolated incidents of bad behavior from full-on abuse: it has to be recurring, it has to include more than one type of action, and it has to be displayed without awareness, accepting responsibility or any willingness to change.
How do you approach conflict in your marriage? Many people feel it's best not to rock the boat and so bottle up all their issues and grievances. But research shows that avoiding conflict rarely works like we hope it would. Trying to avoiding conflict with your spouse might be the easy option but it means that you'll never grow as a couple, and bottling everything up means you're more likely to explode when the arguments do inevitably come. God's idea of marriage is that we build each other up and bring each other closer to Christ, and this is not served by ducking out of those important but uncomfortable conversations. Is there a healthier way to approach conflict? Instead of keeping everything inside until we burst we need to learn to address conflict in a positive and constructive way. This means learning healthy conflict resolution skills for the day to day issues of marriage and finding ways to address and accept those differences which we cannot change.
What do you do when you want to spice up your sex life? We usually start thinking about new positions, or lingerie, or maybe traveling to some exotic location with our spouse. Physical things. But what if the key to great sex was found in a completely different dimension? The research we’re looking at today will actually have a profound impact on the whole scope of your married life. So this is definitely going to be a pivotal topic for many couples who are reading. What we’re going to see is that the quality and nature of your attachment to your spouse has the largest impact on your sexual satisfaction.
Learn about our new 30 Day Betrayal Recovery Devotionals. These matching devotionals for the betrayer and betrayed are the first of their kind in the marketplace to help couple recover and rebuild their marriages. To purchase your devotionals, go to http://oyf.link/120
OYF119: Why You Can’t Trust Your Spouse
OYF118: What to Talk About on Your Next Date
OYF117: How to Appreciate Your Spouse
OYF116: Your Marriage Needs an Intimacy Checkup
OYF115: So You Stayed Married Just for the Kids’ Sake, Now What?