Dear George and Amal,
Congratulations on your recent nuptials! We were not there, but we did hear about the beautiful wedding from a friend (more specifically, Access Hollywood) and saw the beautiful photos from another (People Magazine). There are a few things we’d like to share with you based on our years of experience as (married) relationships experts and sex therapists so that when you return home from your Honeymoon (November? December?) you’ll steer clear of some of these common marriage killers We’ve also pulled lines from some of your famous characters, George, as reminders of what not to say in certain situations:
- Affirmation starvation: It may become easy to take for granted all the qualities that fueled your attraction to each other. Make a point of expressing what you admire and appreciate about each other. Strive for this every day. Even if you’re only successful half the time, you’ll be nurturing your relationship quite well.
What not to say: “Deceitful, two-faced she-woman!” (“O’ Brother Where Art Thou?”)
- Late-night arguing: Everyone reaches a time in the evening when fatigue overrides their best selves. Whatever time that is for each of you, pick the earlier time and pledge NOT to discuss anything of importance after that hour. Better to pick it up again with a fresh mind the next day than adhere to the Old Testament tenet to “not let the sun set on your anger.” It just might prevent a fight of Biblical proportions.
What not to say: “Why is it that all the beautiful ones are homicidal maniacs? Is it me?” (Batman & Robin)
- Keeping score: You’re officially a team now and good teammates don’t keep track of how many times she didn’t answer her cell phone or how many times he forgot to put his socks in the hamper this month. If something feels imbalanced or if you notice a pattern of undesirable behavior, address it directly, but without citing your accounting results.
What not to say: “This is why Superman works alone.” (Batman & Robin)
- Bedroom boredom: Finding familiar comfort in the Bedroom with your spouse is a clear benefit of marriage, but when that familiarity turns to routine, it’s time to add some novelty. Take our Sexual Preferences Survey together now, revisit it each anniversary and watch your sexual communication soar to new levels.
What not to say: “You’re either in or your’re out. Right now.” (Oceans Eleven) or “I always find the fish. Always!” (The Perfect Storm)
- Financial infidelity: Money is a huge cause of marital discord, regardless of your tax bracket. So no matter how tight the prenup, we recommend regular financial meetings where you discuss goals, concerns (we know, we know) and open up the books.
What not to say: “Is this your first time being robbed? You’re doing great.” (Out of Sight)
Drs. Bill & Ginger Bercaw
Clinical Psychologists, Certified Sex Addiction Therapists and Certified Sex Therapists.
Drs. Bill and Ginger Bercaw are the only Licensed Clinical Psychologists who hold both the Certified Sex Therapist Addiction Therapist (CSAT) and Certified Sex Therapist (CST) certifications.