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Navigating and Resolving Political Conflicts in Marriage

conflict fairness stress Oct 13, 2020

Ah, politics.

It’s on everyone’s mind these days. And, let's face it, conditions of polarization and disagreement haven’t just intensified in government, society, and the media. They've also intensified in marriage.

Some couples experience the most extreme form of these political conflicts, with one partner representing the far Left and the other the far Right. In the US right now, this looks like an ardent Biden supporter and an ardent Trump supporter, struggling each...

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The Power of Creating Physical and Mental Space in Marriage

 

Over the last six or so months, many couples have experienced the disappearance of space. Physical space is gone. We used to have work, business trips, the gym, and all sorts of other events and activities in life that provided this kind of physical space and separation from each other.

But that’s only part of the problem. We are also experiencing the disappearance of mental space. This form of space is less tangible but perhaps even more significant. It’s space from...

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How to Find Novelty in a Time of Pandemic-Induced Marital Monotony

If you're like us, you’re probably grappling with one of the peculiar experiences of pandemic life: the loss of novelty.

In pre-Covid times, life seemed full of novelty, of new and fresh experiences. You might have had dinner parties or barbecues to attend. You might have had movies, festivals, sporting events, or concerts on your calendar. You might have looked forward to exciting new trips and vacations. 

You might have even found novelty at work in the form of team...

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The 'Blame Game' in Marriage Doesn't Work (Do This Instead)

conflict fairness stress Sep 22, 2020

When something goes wrong, horribly wrong, our first instinct is to blame.

We experienced this first hand last year during our family trip to Mexico (ah, vacations...remember those?). On our drive from the airport to the hotel, we were pulled over by the Mexican police for 45 minutes.

Then, our hotel room ended up sharing a wall with the all-night New Year’s Eve dance party, which meant that we (and our 8-year-old) slept, not at all. And then after moving to a new resort,...

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You Can't Have It All in Marriage (But You Can Have This)

habits roles space stress Sep 15, 2020

Over the last several decades, our culture has adopted a new definition of success. It used to be that success in life involved being really good at one thing.

You might be an amazing writer. A brilliant teacher. A savvy businessperson. Or a devoted stay-at-home parent.

Nowadays, however, we've expanded the scope of success. It’s no longer enough to be good at just one thing. We now have to be good at, well, everything.

If you're an overachiever at work, with a stressful job, you...

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What do you do with those random and automatic sexual thoughts in marriage?

affairs habits science sex Sep 09, 2020

Has this ever happened to you?

You’re walking down the street. Out of the corner of your eye, you notice a strikingly beautiful man or woman.

You turn your gaze toward them and, without knowing why, you find yourself drawn to the sight of this person.

Seconds later, you may even find yourself lost in a mental daydream, a spontaneous fantasy where you're seducing this innocent bystander in a chaise lounge by a pool. Or perhaps you just feel the tingling sensations of sexual energy...

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Keeping Score is Bad. Accountability is Good. But what's the difference?

conflict fairness roles stress Sep 02, 2020

It’s date night. You've arranged the childcare. And you and your partner have a clear agreement to meet at 6pm.

There’s just one problem. It’s now 6:15pm, and your partner is nowhere to be found.

You feel angry and rightly so. You text them: "WHERE ARE YOU?" When your partner finally does arrive, at 6:20pm, how do you respond?

It's a question worth asking because your response in moments like these has the power to strengthen or destroy your connection. When...

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How can you tell the difference between big and little problems in marriage?

The last several months have been hard on everyone. We've heard this from countless couples. We’ve also heard them say, “Sometimes, I can't tell whether we are just having a bad day or whether something is really wrong.”

At the individual level, this can show up as having trouble distinguishing life's ordinary upsets from something more serious: chronic anxiety, depression, or burnout.

In marriage, this can show up as having trouble distinguishing everyday tiffs...

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5 science-backed ways to improve your marriage

habits science sex Jul 29, 2020

 

There’s something odd about the very idea of "the science of marriage." Raising kids together, negotiating disputes, or having outrageous sex – these aren't "scientific" activities. It would be odd to use predictive analytics to improve your parenting. It would be even stranger to use data sets of your past trysts to spice up your sex life. 

All that's to say that science can't explain the mystery of marriage -- the actual experience of being in love. 

And...

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When do Friendships Outside of Marriage Turn Into Entanglements?

affairs conflict sex Jul 22, 2020

 

Will and Jada Smith recently introduced a new word into the vernacular of marriage: “entanglements." It’s their way of referring to the people outside your marriage who blur the line between friendship and an emotional or actual affair.

We thought this whole idea of “entanglements" raised a fascinating question: when does a relationship outside of marriage become something more like an emotional affair? When does it begin to undermine intimacy and trust in...

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