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October 1, 2014 / 7 Tishri, 5775
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Part 1 – The Secret To A Happy Marriage


Schonbuch-Rabbi-Daniel

No doubt, Yossi and Deborah would be challenged by financial concerns, work stress, childrearing, and difficult in-law relationships. Amidst the ups and downs of everything waiting for them – happy or disappointing moments, quality times enjoyed together or stressful late nights at work, watching their children take their first steps or struggling at school – the “secret,” that could hold their marriage together and bring them the most happiness and stability in their lives, would be to focus on the primal importance of their relationship.

I call this simple yet revolutionary idea Relationship Theory, which states that for a marriage to work, both husband and wife need to make their relationship the main goal of their lives.

Another way of stating this is: H=QR

Where, Happiness (H) is directly proportional to the Quality of Relationship (QR) one develops with their spouse. The more that a couple works on deepening both the quality and quantity of their relationship, the greater likelihood they have for success.

That’s why, when couples like Yossi and Deborah come to speak with me about their fears of marriage, I begin by asking them if they are willing to make their relationship a priority in their lives. If they don’t make it the number one priority, then it’s going to be very difficult, if not impossible, for them to succeed.

My next column, Part 2, will discuss The Purpose of Marriage

Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch, MA, is the Executive Director of Shalom Task Force and the author of an upcoming book about marriage called First Aid Kit For Jewish Marriages. He maintains a practice in family counseling and is a popular lecturer on S.H.A.L.O.M. Workshop for Engaged couples. To register for the workshop, visit www.shalomworkshop.org. You can e-mail questions to him at rabbischonbuch@yahoo.com.

About the Author: Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch, MA, Marriage and Family Therapy, is an expert in marriage counseling, pre-marital education, and helping teens in crisis with offices in Flatbush, Cedarhurst, and Crown Heights. He is a certified PAIRS instructor, and trained as a Level 1, Emotionally Focused Therapist at the Ackerman Institute for the Family, and is a member of AASECT. He is the author of At Risk – Never Beyond Reach and First Aid For Jewish Marriages. To watch his free videos on marriage and parenting and for appointments visit: www.JewishMarriageSupport.com or call 646-428-4723


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More Articles from Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch
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Separation anxiety disorder is a condition in which a child becomes fearful and nervous when away from home or separated from a loved one – usually a parent or other caregiver – to whom the child is attached.

Schonbuch-Rabbi-Daniel

I try to focus on the parents in a way that is not often addressed. As soon as the child gets anxious, the parent gets anxious;

Most people are not aware that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults age 18 and older (18% of U.S. population).

Parental conflict affects children in varying ways, depending on their age. For example, teenagers around the age of fifteen or sixteen are most likely to involve themselves in their parents’ battles. Younger children may keep their feelings hidden inside and may only show signs of depression in late childhood or early adolescence.

When parents come to talk to me about a troubled child or teenager, I often find it helpful to explore whether or not their marriage is causing their teenager to be at risk.

Active listening is only one part of the marriage equation; learning what to say and what not to say is the other half. And, it’s not just about expressing your feelings, but doing it in a way that avoids hurting the other person.

Control may be the most destructive force influencing a marriage. Let me illustrate this point with the following story. About two years ago a woman named Bracha, 47, came to speak to me about her husband’s controlling behavior. This is how she described her precarious situation:

Controlling behavior may be the number one reason that your marriage needs first aid.

If you are unfamiliar with the topic of control, it’s no surprise. Most people are unaware that control is a major issue for counselors, therapists and psychologists-at-large.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/marriage-relationships/part-1-the-secret-to-a-happy-marriage/2008/11/21/

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