Dating and Relationships, Enjoyment, Sex

Learn to Reconnect

Comments Off on Learn to Reconnect 17 June 2010

Dr. Karen Gail Lewis

If you have two minutes, we have a quick little trick that might just make your marriage last forever. We are not kidding. If you’re worried about your marriage (and even if you’re not!), you simply have to try this.

Do you feel like you’re drifting apart?

Couples often lead such busy lives that they don’t take time to share and really be together. Even if they carve out date nights, doing things like going to the movies or out with friends doesn’t give them a renewed sense of knowing and loving each other. Time for themselves as friends and lovers gets pushed to the end of the to-list that, of course, never has an end. Without this personal connection, minor annoyances can turn into huge arguments. Yet, with it, minor annoyances are just that — minor.

But if you do a little bit every day, it won’t be such a painful chore.

Here’s an exercise I created many years ago to help couples build in this special time for themselves, even with hectic daily schedules. It takes two minutes, which really can be squeezed into any day. And, when put into perspective (preparing for a divorce takes a lot longer), it’s very doable. The exercise is called “ITS.” In the story below, you’ll see how ITS got its name.

After 13 years of marriage, Jacob and Eliza have become compatible housemates and marginally compatible co-parents to their three sons. They both work; they have their own interests they share with friends. They go out together as a family; they go out with other couples.

What, you may ask, is the problem? They rarely spend time together, just the two of them. And when they do, as Eliza says, “We usually talk about the kids, work, politics — nothing personal.”

On the surface, it looks like Jacob and Eliza have a relatively good marriage. The only real problem, as Eliza implies, is they’ve grown distant. They don’t talk about anything personal or loving. They don’t talk about their wishes or fears for the future, their dreams, or their love and affection. Their unresolved arguments leave bitterness; their unexpressed anger builds up. Without the loving conversations, there is no balance for the negative feelings — and that can erode a marriage.


Dr. Karen Gail Lewis is a marriage and family therapist (39 years) and author of numerous relationship books — on marriage, for singles, about adult siblings. Her latest is Why Don’t You Understand? A Gender Relationship Dictionary. For 16 years, she has run Unique Retreats For Women, weekends for self-growth and fun.

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