The Crazy Cycle

I usually post about art-related topics, but I really feel a need to share this so please indulge me.

This weekend my wife and I attended a marriage conference sponsored by Focus on the Family. Jennie and I have only been married 7 weeks, but with the divorce rate at 50% we want to avoid becoming one of the statistics.

The “Love and Respect” conference was led by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs and his wife Sarah. It was a real eye-opener for both of us. Their basic philosophy, drawn from the Bible, is simple but insightful: Men are not motivated by the same things as women. Just as a woman is motivated by unconditional love from her husband, a husband is motivated by unconditional respect from his wife. If either spouse is denied this basic need, disaster can result. They called it “the crazy cycle”, a cycle that will spin towards divorce.

Suppose a husband fails to show love to his wife. She will react by treating him disrespectfully. Then as she fails to show him respect, he will react by treating her unlovingly. This cycle repeats over and over until the marriage disintegrates. Breaking the cycle is hard work because often women don’t feel their husbands are worthy of respect, and often husbands don’t feel their wives are worthy of their affection.

In addition, men and women interpret words and actions differently. Women see the world through pink sunglasses and men see the world through blue, resulting in repeated misunderstandings and conflicts. But if each spouse will do the hard work to understand, or “decode”, what the other is feeling, and then respond with what the other needs (love or respect), the marriage will grow stronger and more wonderful.

I don’t know if I’m explaing this well. But if you are married, I strongly encourage you to visit the Love and Respect website and watch or listen to some of their multimedia clips. Or order one of their CDs. You won’t regret it.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled art blog…