The Power of Love and Respect
With Valentine's Day just around the corner, retailers have stocked up on red and pink hearts, candies, flowers, cards, stuffed animals, candles, and other items associated with this special celebration. Texas A&M AgriLife Extension is also geared up to meet a very important need - marriage education.
Twogether in Texas Marriage Education workshop helps couples build marriage and relationship skills. Couples who take the classes learn communication and conflict resolution skills to develop and maintain healthy relationships. The interactive format of the classes helps couples practice communicating better and supporting each other. The workshop that I teach covers Marriage Expectations, Communication, Conflict Resolution, Money Management, and Goals & Dreams.
Here are some frequently asked questions:
The Twogether in Texas Marriage Education workshop is scheduled for Saturday, February 2, starting at 8:30 a.m. at the Extension Office, 1200 W. Houston Street, Sulphur Springs. Even though the workshop is free, couples DO need to call to register in order for adequate preparations to be made. Contact the Hopkins County Extension Office at 903-885-3443 and leave your name and phone number. This workshop is only offered three times a year at the Extension Office if the classes make, so take advantage of the opportunity!
While we're on the topic of love and marriage, research reveals that during marital conflict, a husband most often reacts when feeling disrespected and a wife reacts when feeling unloved. Dr. Emerson Eggerichs, author of Love and Respect, indicates that when 7,000 people were asked, "When you are in conflict with your spouse or significant other, do you feel unloved or disrespected?" 83% of the men said "disrespected", and 72% of the women said "unloved."
Though we all need love and respect equally, the felt need differs during conflict. For example, when a woman feels unloved during conflict, her natural reaction is to respond disrespectfully. When a husband feels disrespected during conflict, his reaction is to respond unlovingly. Dr. Eggerichs calls this the Crazy Cycle - without love a wife reacts without respect, and without respect a husband reacts without love.
The message the wife is trying to send in her negative reaction is "I don't feel loved by you right now." The message the husband hears is< 'I don't respect you, buster, unless you change immediately." When he reacts either in anger or by stonewalling, the message the wife hears again is, "I don't love you." Things get crazy because this feeds itself. Her disrespect feeds his lack of love. His unloving reactions feed her disrespect. Round and round it goes.
The Twogether in Texas workshop address conflict resolution along with other valuable topics to help couples get off on a strong footing.
While we are postponing, life speeds by!
Johanna Hicks, B.S., M.Ed.
Extension Family & Consumer Sciences Agent
1200-B W. Houston
P.O. Box 518
Sulphur Springs, TX 75483
903-885-3443 - phone
903-439-4909 - fax