Questions from our Relationship Weekend

Questions from our Relationship Weekend

/carl and Yolanda Bennet answer your marriage questionsOn June 4-5 2010, One Flesh Ministries hosted a relationship weekend. On Saturday afternoon, we allow those in attendance to ask us questions and we would like to share the questions/answers with our website viewers.

How long should you date?

There is no set answer for this question. The only people who can honestly answer that question are you and your potential spouse. In our opinion, a lasting relationship can be built in a few weeks and others may take a few years. However, every relationship has to have a foundation of love, faith, trust and friendship and you will know when you have those things. It is also important that you allow those that you trust and are close to you to help you to determine if it's time to move into the direction of marriage. Of course, the ultimate decision will be yours.
We did not say that they should make the decision for you but it is a good idea if you allow someone such as your pastor, parents or spiritual mentor to pray for you and your potential spouse regarding your dating relationship.

What are some reconnecting role-playing activities that we can do to strengthen our relationship?

This is a great question. The longer a marriage continues, the more stresses and pressures are placed on the couple. Even the best marriages will encounter some type of conflict or disconnect. A healthy marriage is able to withstand the test of the conflicts and the couple is able to regularly reconnect with one another. If you are finding it difficult to reconnect, here are some simple things that you can do to reconnect:

Set aside some time to spend with your spouse and focus on your relationship
. Make sure the time you spend together is just for the two of you. If you cannot set aside time weekly, try to set aside some time at least once or twice a month. Attend a sporting event, concert, movie, or dinner. Whatever it is the two of you enjoy doing together, now is the time to go out and do it.

Plan a romantic date. It would be great to do this at least once a month. Take your spouse to a romantic dinner or dancing. This is a great opportunity to spend time talking to one another without the distractions you normally encounter.

Create Intimacy. Intimacy in marriage is one of the best ways to reconnect with your spouse. It draws couples closer together and keeps the marriage healthy. If you both are busy and on the move, you have to schedule or make time to spend with your spouse. You can hold hands during a movie, while driving in the car, and practically anywhere. Touching your spouse does not always mean it will lead to sex, it is simply a small way to remind your spouse you are attracted to them and enjoy their presence.

Talk to each other.
What better way to reconnect than through conversation. Share your thoughts with your spouse. You may be surprised to find out that they are interested in hearing how your day went. Creating small talk will open the door for you to discuss a more meaningful dialogue later. It is okay to talk about the news, your favorite TV show, or even what you have been experiencing in your relationship with Christ. Get into each other's world.

My spouse and I use to go out all of the time. We use to do so many things together. Present day we barely if ever do. How can I turn use to do into still do?

Here is where we believe you and your spouse need to start thinking creatively. Instead of doing things that have been done over and over again, try something totally different, go somewhere you have heard about, but never been and if finances is the issue save for it, this will make it more enjoyable.

What are your thoughts and views on friends of the opposite sex when you are in a relationship?

When it comes to having a friend/friends of the opposite sex, we feel that when you start your relationship this should be the one of the first things talked about. It is important that your partner fully accept and understand the friendship you have, we say this because friends of the opposite sex can be very intimidating to the person you are in relationship with. In our opinion, having a friend of the opposite sex is okay as long as your partner is honest and not intimidated by the friendship.

My spouse is emotionally distance. How do I get him to tell me how much he cares for me and appreciate me before I ask or mention it?

Most men are not emotional creatures and it may have something to do with the way they were raised. If you have never expressed the desire to him, chances are he will not immediately notice it.  Men may think they are showing and expressing themselves emotionally because they work, pay the bills, and come home every day. This must be discussed with him to the fullest extent in order for him to understand your emotional need.

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