Election/ Directory / Launch Simulator / Love Dare Comments - 1/3/08

Smartmarriages smartmarriages at lists101.his.com
Sun Nov 2 23:54:16 EST 2008


- ELECTION
- DIRECTORY LISTINGS
- KENNEDY SPACE CENTER
- LOVE DARE RESPONSE
 
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- ELECTION

Someone told me today that it's predicted that we're going to have 80% voter
turnout in some jurisdictions.  I said I bet that among Smart Marriages
folks we'll have 99% turnout.  We're all activists!

I also heard a line that's making the rounds: On Wed morning, no matter who
wins, the winner will probably demand a recount....the task is seen as that
daunting.  

Let's try to get word to whomever it is that we have solutions - ideas that
can help reduce family breakdown and the burden on taxpayers.  - diane

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- DIRECTORY LISTINGS

Here are two brand new Directory Listings - I want to bring them to your
attention. The first one, Children of Divorce, was a big hit at the San
Francisco marriage film fesitival, and After the Honeymoon sounds very
appealing.  To find out how to list your programs or resources for less than
$6 a month, see: http://www.smartmarriages.com/directorylisting.html

> Children of Divorce: The TOUGH Truth
> A 1 hr 40 min DVD based curriculum designed for those who have experienced
> divorce or are considering it, also appropriate for professionals. This series
> dramatizes the tough truth of divorce as told by the children: the pain,
> process and moving on to productivity. It's an in-depth look at the
> multi-generational impact of divorce, remarriage, and stepfamily life. Also
> about the transformation from brokenness to healing ­ bringing the pieces to
> peace. Ready to use - "teach out of the box" - for workshops, conferences,
> small groups. The Taylors are available to conduct workshops and conferences
> at your location.
> Gordon Taylor & Carri Taylor, Executive Coach
> Website: http://www.ChildrensToughTruth.com

> After The Honeymoon ‹ Sexulity in Relationship/Matto-Shepard
> Erotic Partnership ‹ emotionally connected sexuality for married couples.  We
> offer workshops and vacation retreats which assist committed couples to
> rekindle the sexual spark and fan the flames of desire.  These workshops
> combine communication exercises, practices to increase intimacy, and practical
> advice for erotic exploration.  Drawing from psychology and spirituality, our
> programs promote personal responsibility, emotional closeness, and sexual
> satisfaction within a safe and enjoyable atmosphere. We create opportunities
> for couples to remember how easy love can be.
> CEUs available for MFTs and LCSWs.
> Jim Matto-Shepard, PhD & Felicia Matto-Shepard, MFT
> Website: http://www.afterthehoneymoon.org

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- KENNEDY SPACE CENTER

Diane, 
As part of our trip to the Orlando Conference, we are planning to come a few
days early and visit the Kennedy Space Center which is 50 miles east of
Orlando on the Atlantic.

More than likely there will be a Space Shuttle sitting on the launch
pad being readied for a mission to the International Space Station.
With luck, the launch may occur within a few days of the conference. You
can't really count on the posted schedule this far out, but you can sign up
on the site for alerts.  Might be fun for anyone bringing kids to sign them
up for these alerts.

We have also learned about a new attraction at the KSC Visitor Center,
called Shuttle Launch Experience, which is a simulator that allows
people to feel what it is like to ride the Shuttle. It's expensive ($40 for
adults and $30 for kids) but we definitely plan to check that out.  You
might want to share this information with the list:
http://www.kennedyspacecenter.com/shuttle_launch_Experience/index.asp

Looking forward to seeing you in Orlando.

Dick & Carol Cronk


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- LOVE DARE RESPONSE

I received several email comments on the opinions expressed by John Gottman
and Bill Doherty in the USA Today article on the Love Dare book
( http://tinyurl.com/65hah6. )  I will send one that represents the points
made by the many.  - diane


Hi Diane--
 
I felt Gottman's and Dougherty's comments in the USA Today article
concerning The Love Dare came across as haughty, dismissive, biased, and
poorly researched. 
 
* First, the Kendricks did not write the book primarily to be a stand-alone
volume. It flowed out of its mention in Fireproof and is intended as a
follow-up to the movie. The book is part of a package as evidenced by its
being offered as a package along with the Fireproof DVD and a study guide on
Amazon.
 
* The mention that the book is likely to appeal primarily to evangelical
Christians. Is that a criticism? (a) That is no small audience; (b) Isn't
there actually wisdom in having your audience in mind when you write a book;
and (c) Where's the "research" to back up such a claim?
 
* With the numbers who are seeing the movie and/or purchasing the book, if
only a percentage see their marriages improve, is it possible that that
number, or percentage, may be equal to (or even better than) the
number/percentage who actually see their lives or marriages changed long
term following a marriage ed. seminar or counseling?
 
* As the marriage ed. movement grows more "seasoned" we need to watch that
we don't develop our version of the turf pride/defensiveness we've seen over
the decades in the mental health field (e.g., psychiatry toward psychology,
psychology toward social work, etc. and, to some extent, marriage therapists
toward marriage educators)--the assumption that our way is the best way; or
this is rocket science, don't try this at home. Sort of similar, I would
suggest, to the snobbery of the anti-Palin, Good-Old-Boys (or Girls)
mentality: If you're not one of us, you're a rank amateur; and, therefore,
dismissable. Are we that insecure? Arguably the greatest life transformer of
all time (in the eyes of many) was dissed because of where He came from:
"Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?" Isn't the tent big enough to
encourage all efforts to strengthen and restore marriages?
 
* The "decidedly religious tone" of the book (and movie) is actually a
strength, but Gottman and Dougherty mention it as an implied criticism; as
though all materials must be PC so as to be accepted by Everyman/woman.
Where does that come from? In most studies of individual and marital
strength, having a personal faith is found to be one of the key elements. I,
along with millions of Christians, am very weary of our society, Hollywood,
the media, and often the mental health field suggesting that we should keep
our faith to ourselves; a hangover of Freud's viewing religion as an
illusion or crutch, and Marx as the opiate of the masses.
 
* And, following up on the preceding point, one of the phenomena often
related to religious/spiritual experience is transformation; not just
gradual baby steps of change, but whole-person, radical and lasting
metamorphosis. While the mental health field aims at modifying presenting
problems, spiritual change can be transformative as illustrated in dramatic
form by St. Paul's Damascus Road conversion. (And, working in the settings I
have worked in for the past several decades, I have seen many evidences of
this--not sophisticated research but the accumulation of anecdotal data.)
Therefore, to the religious/spiritual person, God sometimes works radical
and lasting transformation in personal and marital lives after the initial
movement of the heart is triggered by a life event, a conversation, a
private conviction, a passage of scripture--or even a simple little book. .
. .
 
* Finally, following up on the preceding point, I have personally witnessed
the following event (which I understand has been repeated numerous times as
a result of the Kendricks' work--whether through the movie or the book): A
couple recently divorced due to serious and repeated violations of marital
commitments by the husband. The husband attended Fireproof and was broken to
tears by his identification with the husband in the movie. This event alone
led him to take the initiative to pursue his ex with a heartfelt desire to
rebuild their marriage on a new foundation. Granted, this was the result of
the impact of the movie rather than the book, but the couple are following
up with the reading of the book--as was the vision of the Kendricks.

Bottom line: Just because someone wears the hat of "expert" or "researcher"
does not mean they are unbiased. And, surely, we should be supporting all
tools and people that contribute to marital strengthening and preservation.

Cary Lantz, PhD
Director, Graduate Counseling Program
Baptist Bible Graduate School
Clarks Summit, PA 
clantz at bbc.edu 
 
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13th Annual Smart Marriages® Conference, Shingle Creek Resort,
Orlando, Florida, July 6-12, 2009 (General Conference July 8-11)
Pre-Conference Training Institutes July 6-8
Post-Conference Training Institutes July 12
 
Shingle Creek Resort: http://www.rosenshinglecreek.com/

Conference schedule, registration, & exhibit information will be posted as
it becomes available at:
http://www.smartmarriages.com/conferencedetails.html
 
List your program and resources on the Directory of Classes at
http://www.smartmarriages.com/directory_browse.html

Order conference audio & video CD/DVD/MP3s: 800-241-7785 or
http://www.iPlaybackSmartMarriages.com

Coalition for Marriage, Family and Couples Education, LLC (CMFCE)
Diane Sollee, Director
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http://www.smartmarriages.com
202-362-3332






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