Recipe / Darwinist Dating / Money Habitudes / Limbaugh - 11/19/08

Smartmarriages smartmarriages at
Wed Nov 19 17:40:29 EST 2008

So many wonderful articles!



Here's a quote just added to the *Infidelity You CAN Recover* page. It's
from Sunday's NYTimes Modern Love series.  Someone was kind enough to alert
me to a bunch of broken links on the Infidelity Resources page - which led
me to add the quote while I was in there doing repairs.  Apparently many
links broke when we redid the website last summer. Appreciate it if you send
me any such alerts....broken links are easier to fix than broken hearts.  -

> We had light flings with others ­ barely anything more than talk; but to us,
> talk was the deepest form of betrayal.
> -Randon Billings Noble   -



Recipe for healthy marriage: Respect, shared morals, healthy sex life
By Ken Robertson, Herald Executive Editor
TriCity Herald (Mid-Columbia | Kennewick, Pasco and Richland, WA)
Nov 19, 2008 

Now that the elections are over, one of America¹s pollsters has turned to a
subject we may talk about even more frequently than politics ‹ sex.

After all, we only have to choose a president once every four years.

HCD Research in Flemington, N.J., was prompted to dive into the subject
after the minister of a Texas mega-church encouraged his married
parishioners to engage in sex.

In the firm¹s report on the study of 155 married Americans was this gem:

³Among respondents who reported that their marriage was Œbelow average,¹ 75
percent indicated that they were having sex with their spouse 0 times a week
on average.²


Only 17 percent of those who reported their marriage was ³above average²
reported they were averaging ³0 times a week.²

In the survey, participants were asked to rate their marital satisfaction
and the importance of seven factors in contributing to a healthy marriage ‹
healthy sex life, mutual family values, similar religious beliefs, shared
values with finances, common interests/hobbies, shared ethics and morals,
and mutual respect.

³Mutual respect² was No. 1 or No. 2 on everyone¹s list. The ³above average²
group rated it at 97 percent, the ³average² group at 96 percent and the
³below average² at 92 percent. ³Shared ethics and morals² came in at 93
percent for the ³above average² group, 77 percent for the ³average² group
and 100 percent for the ³below average² group.

³Healthy sex life² came in No. 3, according to the pollsters, just ahead of
³mutual family values.² The sex life responses for the three groups were 86
percent, 87 percent and 67 percent. Family values were rated at 84 percent,
83 percent and 83 percent.

³Shared values with finances² fell in the middle for all three groups ‹ 79
percent, 70 percent and 83 percent.

Last and second to last in importance to all three groups were ³common
interests/hobbies² at 54 percent, 53 percent and 75 percent and ³similar
religious beliefs² at 63 percent, 49 percent and 50 percent.

So the advice from these married folks is mutual respect, shared ethics and
a healthy sex life are the top three factors in a healthy marriage.

And this seems worth noting: The old adage that a couple can¹t survive if
they have diverse religious beliefs doesn¹t seem to carry much weight in
today¹s marriages.


This article is by Kay Hymowitz whose book Marriage and Caste in America
(2006) is one of only two books to receive the Smart Marriages Impact award.
Kay enlightened us with a keynote session at the 2007 Denver Smart Marriages
Conference and this, her latest article, might DEPRESS but it will also
enlighten ­ bring you increased awareness of what's going on in the
courtship market. Depressed about what marriage will look like for these
couples???  Maybe we need to change our classes to How to More Efficiently
Catch and Marry a Jerk.  In any case, John Van Epp will present the opening
night Singles Only session in Orlando on some version of his Jerk curriculum
in a session for singles or singles-again.   - diane

City Journal Autumn 2008
Kay S. Hymowitz

Love in the Time of Darwinism
A report from the chaotic postfeminist dating scene, where only the strong

> Moreover, the Darwinists have not just hard-luck stories on their side, but
> hard data as well. Forty years after they threw off the feminine mystique,
> women continue to prefer bigger, stronger, richer men, at least as husbands. .
> . .  A June 2008 New Scientist article reports on two studies that even
> suggest that women are biologically attracted to ³jerks²; researchers
> speculate that narcissistic, risk-taking men had an evolutionary advantage.

> Darwinist dating may explain the litany of stories you hear from women about
> the troglodytes in their midst. ³We can be slovenly from the start,² one
> interview subject told Amy Cohen in her dating column for the New York
> Observer, ³because we can get laid anytime we want.² . . .
> Indeed, the Darwinists wonder, why pretend we¹re interested in anything other
> than sex?

> In fact, some people would wager that the Darwinian answer to dating chaos is
> our future normal. . . . . ³This is a worldwide phenomenon. The behavior of
> men is simply a response (which is actually a quite logical one) to the
> changing behavior of women.


Syble Solomon, creator of the Money Habitudes TOOB program, has been working
with the NFL.  She gets great reviews at Smart Marriages and she'll present
again in Orlando where you can check out her Money Habitudes cards deck ­
the perfect €money* add-on to any marriage education program in these
challenging financial times.
 - diane 

How Habitudes Affect Financial Decisions 
Nov 18, 2008 

If you¹ve ever questioned why you feel conflicted, confused or overwhelmed
about money, you aren¹t alone. In fact, many people struggle with financial
decisions daily. What most people don¹t know is that there are fundamental
experiences that influence the way money flows in and out of your life.
These experiences result in the formation of habits and attitudes
surrounding money and ultimately affect the decisions you make. They are
called habitudes, and they are so much a part of who we are that we don¹t
even notice them.

Habitudes are present in every aspect of our lives and are primarily
determined by our family experiences. They are further developed through
personal experiences, beliefs and the media. With current headlines
indicating that the nation is experiencing a financial crisis, we are all
susceptible to certain messages. How we process those messages has much to
do with our individual habitudes.

³NFL players face unique issues during these tough economic times,² said
Syble Solomon, founder of LifeWise and creator of Money Habitudes cards,
created to stimulate conversations about finances (
³Financially, they are in a better place than most American families and
therefore may be expected to rescue individuals who are experiencing
financial hardship.²

Before reaching for the checkbook, Solomon cautions players to think about
what is motivating them to help. Is the person in true need of help? Have
they acted irresponsibly? You may feel good by giving to others; however,
you may ultimately sabotage your long-term efforts. ³When giving money
away,² Solomon said, ³you are saying Œno¹ to your own future or the future
of your family.²

The more people are in touch with what motivates their money habits, the
more intentional they will be in saving or spending money. Now is a great
time to examine your habits and attitudes to ensure that your subconscious
thoughts are not sabotaging your financial goals, or even your
relationships. For instance, after reading the headlines that the market is
down another 200 points, you may be inclined to secure your assets and not
spend another dime. This may be a great short-term solution; however, by not
focusing on the bigger picture you may pass up on other great deals.

³A player may have been okay with his wife spending in the past,² Solomon
said. ³But when the foundation got a little shaky, he pulls in. This may
cause arguments. The player may want more accountability. Basically, this
overreaction may have an adverse affect on the relationship.²

It is important to understand that habitudes are neither good nor bad. Every
habitude brings about an important dimension to your life. Therefore,
becoming personally aware of your feelings about money and staying focused
on the positive should help you to make more focused decisions. Solomon
encourages players to sit with a financial advisor or someone you can trust
to get an overview of your finances and to help address other areas of


Couples who decide to hang in and work on their marriage, need marriage
skills more than ever.  Send me any classes you construct around financial
communication skills.  You might want to listen to Syble Solomon's excellent
session on Money Habitudes as a start and order her add-on, teach out of the
box program. 

> 757-311
> Money Habitudes: The Last Taboo ­ TOOB
> Syble Solomon, MEd
> A unique card deck to gives couples & individuals life-changing insights into
> their attitudes about money. Teach groups, use with individuals, couples,
> youth, or add to any marriage program.

Order at
Or at 800-241-7785  - download for $9.95

Order the program here:
- diane 
> One young woman who came to Jeffrey Wasserman's law office recently seeking
> divorce counseling was sobered by the FINANCIAL realities of dividing assets
> when the value of homes and portfolios is down.
> "After I went over what their lifestyle was now and what it would become after
> a divorce, she went home and is in the process of trying to reconcile the
> marriage," says Mr. Wasserman, a divorce lawyer in Boca Raton. "It all was
> grounded in the economic downturn."
> Noting that divorce filings are down about 17 percent in Florida, Wasserman
> says, "People are deciding to stay together to see if they can pool their
> resources to get through this hard economic time. They're keeping resources in
> one pot rather than dividing them."

Marriages follow the ups and downs of the economy
During tough economic times, couples find that financial problems can affect
their marriage.
By Marilyn Gardner | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor
November 17, 2008 

Life changed in June for Thomas and Jennifer Dodson of Sacramento, Calif.,
when he was laid off by the architecture firm where he worked. He
immediately started his own consulting firm. Although the work is rewarding
and fulfilling, it continues to be an "immense struggle," he says.

Yet he praises his wife for being "more than great" throughout this
experience. "She has been a rock. Despite the stress and turmoil this has
brought into our life, this has made us closer than ever. I don't know how
people do it without the support of their spouse. Having that other person
there whispering in your ear and telling you you can do it is so powerful."

As families face layoffs, shrinking retirement funds, and credit-card debt,
economic uncertainties can test marriages and relationships. Some couples,
like the Dodsons, are finding renewed strength and closeness.

Others will head for divorce court. Still others are trying to solve their
differences in more amicable ways. Whatever the circumstances, Howard
Markman, codirector of the Center for Marital and Family Studies at the
University of Denver, reminds couples that even though they don't have
control over what happens with their employment, they do have control over
their support for each other. "Focus on what you can control," he says.
"That's your marriage and your family."

These challenges affect couples at all income levels. "Often women have
expectations regarding their husband's ability to produce, provide, and
protect," says Elinor Robin, a divorce mediator in Boca Raton, Fla. "When he
is unable to meet these expectations and she is unable to accept and see
beyond her needs, there is a chipping away at the bond that connects them."

Husbands face challenges, too. Szifra Birke, a wealth counselor in
Chelmsford, Mass., tells of a client who earns $200,000 a year. "He has such
extreme anxiety from losing $160,000 [in the stock market] that he is
snapping at his wife and children for going to the movies. He is
micromanaging all purchases, including Dunkin' Donuts coffee, and he told
his wife she shouldn't drive so much or text message their kids."

In addition to conflicts like these over spending and saving, those who are
under economic stress tend to be less able to notice things that are going
well in their relationships with their spouse and children, says Stephanie
Coontz, director of research at the Council on Contemporary Families in
Chicago. "As soon as something goes wrong, they will be much more conscious
of any behavior that is not helpful and tend to respond to it much more
abruptly and negatively: 'You didn't pay that bill on time.' One of the
first things that falls out of family life under stress are little exchanges
of gratitude and appreciation that maintain smooth relationships.
Appreciation is so important in families."

One young woman who came to Jeffrey Wasserman's law office recently seeking
divorce counseling was sobered by the financial realities of dividing assets
when the value of homes and portfolios is down.

"After I went over what their lifestyle was now and what it would become
after a divorce, she went home and is in the process of trying to reconcile
the marriage," says Mr. Wasserman, a divorce lawyer in Boca Raton. "It all
was grounded in the economic downturn."

Noting that divorce filings are down about 17 percent in Florida, Wasserman
says, "People are deciding to stay together to see if they can pool their
resources to get through this hard economic time. They're keeping resources
in one pot rather than dividing them."

Yet he cautions that couples must reconcile for the right reasons. "Unless
they and their spouse do something to try to rekindle the flame or put the
marriage together, it's going to wind up terminating somewhere down the

Sheryl Kurland, author of "Everlasting Matrimony," likes to put today's
challenges in a historical context.

When she interviewed 75 couples who had been married 50 years or more, many
talked about losing jobs and living through hard times. For most, she says,
"Divorce never entered the picture. They said, 'Somehow we're going to work
this out.' These couples simply did not buy what they couldn't afford. If
they couldn't buy it [then], they would go home and say, 'How can we save
our pennies so we can buy the washing machine?' "

The couples also found creative ways to make their relationship lively, Ms.
Kurland says. "They would cook a meal together, pack a picnic lunch and go
to a park, or turn on the radio and dance. They were spending time together
without spending money." She adds, "The ingredients for a healthy, loving
relationship never change. Only the peripheral factors around you change."

Communication is essential. "Decisions must be agreed upon together with a
view towards reducing the burdens," says Jerome Wisselman, a lawyer in Great
Neck, N.Y.

Although family specialists agree that it is helpful for couples to share
their concerns, some caution that constantly voicing fears will only fuel
anxieties. "Keep the conversations, even the disagreements, focused on the
subject and not the person," says Maryann Karinch, an author of books on
interpersonal skills. "Do not make accusatory or sarcastic remarks that
criticize your partner's competence or judgment." She also recommends that
couples going through anxious financial times try some activity ­ athletic,
volunteer, intellectual ­ that draws on their talents and focuses on
something positive and mutually satisfying.

Instead of letting the financial stress rip a family apart, couples can
experience it as an opportunity to pull together, says Belinda Rachman, a
divorce attorney in Carlsbad, Calif.

Coontz takes the long view. "One of the things that can come out of this
experience, difficult though it is, is a renewed understanding that our own
individual fortunes as a family or a marriage are really not separable from
those of other families," she says. "If you have compassion for other people
and gratitude toward other people, you are also more likely to have that
toward your own family members."

Here's a great idea for a Marriage Week event.
Couple Enhances Communication and Wins Family Vacation!

Send your ideas and schedules for your Feb 09 Marriage Week or Black
Marriage Day celebrations and I'll post them here:
And, here:


I don't know if you follow but they have an interesting
piece today on marriage and Rush Limbaugh.  I'm guessing they post aritcles
like this to draw people to their site so they will see the helpful marriage
information. You keep talking about how to get the information out to the
public but maybe you should flip your thinking and think, instead, of ways
to get the public to your website. Marriage.about also has ads on their
site. You might consider this as a way to make money that would allow you to
advertise more and, also, maybe update your site.  I don't think it would
bother any of us if you posted ads.  Anyway, in case you are not familiar
with these folks, here is their link:
Larry C. 

You're right.  I've thought of using celebrity names - post articles about
Sarah Palin or David Cook or such just to lead Google to the site.  And, I
have thought about ads. And, yes, I'm dazzled by the amazing look of so many
updated sites (many among our own coalition!).  Also, I agree that has great info and I have promoted them many times on the
list. Thanks for the ideas. Now just send me time - I need more time! -

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