Strengthening a marital bond…

Couple, Photo: Palm Beach

couples in a relationship PHOTO:Pixabay
Relationship and family researchers gave their two cents on attributes that strengthen marital bonds. It is indeed an interesting read.
Use terms of endearment.

“Pet names take you back either to the happy childhood you had or the one you wish you had,” says a research. “They signal a safe, supportive environment.” Also, these days, when we’re stretched to the limit trying to juggle jobs and kids, “pet names give us the chance to let down our guard, to be vulnerable and childlike. And they make us feel close to one another.”

These same feelings of intimacy can also come from using a special tone of voice with each other, sharing silly “inside jokes,” or pet-naming your spouse’s intimate body parts. The point is to connect with some private message system that’s meaningful to you alone, as a couple, not to the outside world. “This type of playfulness is a statement that you’re feeling comfortable with each other and with the relationship,” says same research.
Do stuffs together
Of all the variables in a relationship, from commitment to communication, the amount of fun couples have together is the strongest factor in determining their overall marital happiness, according to a study.

Time spent playing together, the study says, is an “investment in the relationship”; it provides a relaxed intimacy that strengthens the bond between two people. So even if your life is impossibly frantic, make the time for play. And do all you can to eliminate distractions. The activity doesn’t have to be anything elaborate or costly. Exercising together, taking a walk together, going shopping together, or renting a classic movie can help bring the two of you closer.

Involve third parties less
The first task facing all young couples is separating from their families of origin, points out a family research. If there’s a crisis over any aspect of the marriage, the couple should first talk about it with each other and not to third parties. Unimaginable number of divorces are caused by third party involvements.

Stay connected to your roots
“Staying connected to parents, siblings and relatives can be excellent for a marriage because it gives a sense of family continuity,” says a research. “It generates positive feelings, especially when you incorporate your spouse into that family. You’re sharing that part of you with each other.”

Don’t ‘drag issues’ longer than necessary
When partners begin to add up every wrong word said or wrong deed done, they may be headed for trouble. “Most couples think they should strive for a relationship that’s 50-50,” observed a survey, but the fact is, they should each give 150 percent. In good relationships, couples give everything they can. They don’t drag issues over irrelevancies and they respect that each person gives different things.
Fight constructively
When couples start getting physical or dredging up every single complaint they’ve ever had, you can be sure that they won’t be celebrating their silver anniversary together.

“Studies show that the way couples handle conflict is the most important factor in determining whether or not they stay together,”
“Happy couples have learned the art of constructive arguing,” says a relationship therapist. In strong marriages, he says, the partners take control of their disagreements by establishing ground rules. They also truly listen to each other and won’t prematurely try to solve the problem before they’ve heard each other out. Above all, no matter how angry they get, they don’t resort to name-calling and insults -key danger signs, he says.

Give each other gifts
Couples who are deeply connected often give each other presents or write little notes, says a relationship counsellor. What they’re doing is preserving the rituals and the magic of their courtship. The gift should carry no strings, that is, not given when you want a favour from your better half.

Never lose your sense of humour
Humour, as many psychotherapists have observed, is the Super Glue that keeps a couple together. When a couple can no longer laugh together, a relationship therapist says, it’s a signal that the soul has gone out of their marriage and they are headed for trouble.

But he is quick to point out that light-hearted couples never mock each other. They instinctively know what is-and isn’t-fair game.

Take your “for better or for worse” vow seriously
Contented couples encounter their share of life’s miseries -whether it’s the car breaking down, a health challenge or a job loss -but they help each other get through.

Couples who do well together tend not to do anything that increases their partner’s suffering, like becoming resentful or criticising. In good marriages, people feel safe from the outside world. Each spouse stresses the feeling of “I can count on you; our world is all right,” to the other.
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