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Need a generic book on marriage improvement

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strongfaith posted 3/3/2011 21:36 PM

Not just A-related.

Our problems are:

differing needs
opening up to each other

all the usual a married couple faces, I guess. Any good ideas on something we could use as a tool together? As in read it together with exercises or something to help us learn?


manAscending posted 3/3/2011 21:56 PM

I recommend Hold Me Tight: Seven Conversations for a Lifetime of Love by Sue Johnson. This book really altered the way I see love relationships and was a fundamental part of my IC sessions as a wayward spouse looking to change. You can check out more about it at

Other standard reads that you might see mentioned here are The Five Love Languages, and also Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work.

repeatBS326 posted 3/4/2011 08:58 AM

5-Love Languages by Gary Chapman

Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus by John Gray (I had the audio cassette of the "MM/WV:In the Bedroom" version quite a few years ago. Not sure it helped, but it was quite interesting to hear his take on the opposite sexes).

7yrsbetrayed posted 3/4/2011 11:03 AM

The 7 Principles for Making Marriage Work by John Gottman.

It's not overwhelmingly long. It cuts right to the root of all the things you've got listed there. It gives you specific exercises to do with your spouse to improve those things.


Rollercoaster posted 3/4/2011 14:21 PM

The Divorce Remedy by Michelle Weiner (I think).

Faithsurviver posted 3/4/2011 15:54 PM

I have 3 books that I have read, maybe not for my former marraige to xwh ( even though I would consider R if his "fog" would lift :P )

1. "Things I Wish I'd Known Before We Got Married" by Gary Chapman (author of the 5 Love Languages)
2. The Love Dare (goes along with the book Fireproof)
3 Love Secrets for a Lasting Relationship

Good Luck!

Fighting2Survive posted 3/5/2011 20:38 PM

Like others have said, The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work is an excellent book. It has exercises and it is completely focused on the most common issues in a M.

We started Hold Me Tight but it required more emotional awareness than FWH can muster at this point. He's trying, but he's just not there yet. If your H isn't in tune with himself emotionally, you both would have a hard go of it. If he is, I'd highly recommend this one. It doesn't address practical matters, but it gets to the heart of emotional disconnections between spouses.

BigMo3516 posted 3/5/2011 22:12 PM

Gary Chapmans "Now Your Speaking My Language". Hits on all of your topics and in great depth with great application methods. It's also covers briefly what his other books mentioned here cover so it has it all.

HardenMyHeart posted 3/6/2011 01:19 AM

For the Woman:
The Secrets of Happily Married Women: How to Get More Out of Your Relationship by Doing Less by Scott Haltzman

For the Man:
The Secrets of Happily Married Men: Eight Ways to Win Your Wife's Heart Forever by Scott Haltzman

For Both:
The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman

For Stress:
The 14 Day Stress Cure: A New Approach for Dealing With Stress That Can Change Your Life by
Morton C. Orman

itsjustnotfiar posted 3/6/2011 16:13 PM

Surprisingly, these books were awesome for marriage improvement.

Marriage Fitness: 4 Steps to Building & Maintaining Phenomenal Love (Paperback)
by Mort Fertel

Love Dare - Steven Kendrick. There's also a movie about this called Fireproof. Horrible acting but really hit home with us.

temporaryinsaniT posted 3/7/2011 06:26 AM

"Fighting for Your Marriage" it covers all of the areas that your looking for.

repeatBS326 posted 3/17/2011 08:16 AM


Five Languages of Apology by Gary Chapman & Jennifer Thomas.

Anger: Handling a Powerful Emotion in a Healthy Way by Gary Chapman

And, here's an oddball one but can help M if $$$ issues are a weak point in the M:

The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

It's surprising how being out-of-debt (or out of credit card debt) can lighten the stress in a M.

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