2011 December, available at: ForYourMarriage.org

Archive for December, 2011

December 14, 2011

Often affairs start because one partner starts confiding in a friend of the opposite sex, and a bond starts to deepen. If something’s troubling you enough, a counselor is the safer outlet.

Advent Struggle

I am struggling with Christmas shopping. More to the point I am struggling with our consumerist interpretation of “preparing for Christmas” and its mass media displacement of Advent.

December 13, 2011

Fighting Fair Tip: Never say “Never” or “Always.” It may seem like your spouse always leaves the gas tank on empty, but there’s always an exception that blows your argument. Be more accurate by saying “often” or “sometimes.” It stings less and creates less defensiveness.

A Little Advent Music

While the Church is celebrating Advent, society is bombarding us with Christmas songs. Is there any Advent music to draw us into the spirit of the present season?

December 12, 2011

(Our Lady of Guadalupe) Quick, what’s the first image of Mary, the mother of Jesus, that comes to your mind? Is she of the same race and age as you are? Latinos celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe today. Have you ever pictured God or Mary as a different race than your own?

December 11, 2011

“Rejoice always.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16) It may seem unrealistic to “Rejoice always” as St. Paul encourages us to do in this scripture, but surely you can find one thing to be grateful for today or to rejoice over.

December 10, 2011

Christmas shopping started? Done? Consider committing to at least one gift of service, as a couple or a family. (Examples: repair a broken toy, or clean a child’s room, visit a lonely person, clean up a park)

Taking Work Home in an Unpleasant Way

Do you assume that a supervisor’s influence is limited to the workplace? A new study finds that abusive supervision can cause the employee to take stress home, creating tension and conflict within the family.

December 9, 2011

Some couples readily conceive when they are ready to have children. Others wait, sadly, as months turn into years without a beloved child. Natural Family Planning can help infertile couples know the optimum time to conceive. Check it out.


Sara lists seven reasons why she and Justin are rejoicing during this Advent season.

December 8, 2011

To thrive, love requires attention, communication and time (Follow the Way of Love, USCCB).

December 7, 2011

What’s your spouse’s primary love language–Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, or Physical Touch? (Gary Chapman, The Five Love Languages) Is yours the same or different?

December 6, 2011

(St. Nicholas Day) St. Nick was a secretive giver. Is there anything nice you can hide for your spouse to find later in the day? A treat? A note? A chore finished? Be creative.

The Prayer of a Stoplight Nap

Josh shares his perspective on coping with and redeeming the disrupted sleep that comes with raising young children.

December 5, 2011

Tomorrow is St. Nick’s Day which means that many parents will put a treat in their child’s shoe tonight. Even if you don’t have a child living with you, consider treating a child whose parents may not. Planning together for ways to help others can draw you closer as a couple.

December 4, 2011

“John (the Baptist) appeared in the desert proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.” (Mk 1:3) In any marriage, hurts are inevitable and there is reason to forgive. It may not be major, like a sin, but often small, like a pinch. Is there anything to forgive today?

December 3, 2011

“Children benefit from our ‘presence’ more than our ‘presents’”(Raising Kids Who Will Make a Difference). During this Advent ponder the tone that time with your spouse, children, and extended family will take during the Christmas season.

December 2, 2011

It is at home that people truly learn to live, to value life and health, freedom and peace, justice and truth, work, harmony and respect (Pope Benedict XVI).

The Catholic Marriage Wisdom Book

Several hundred brief and not-quite-so-brief quotations on marriage, family life and parenthood make up “The Catholic Marriage Wisdom Book” compiled by Donna Marie Cedar-Southworth. There is advice here – from Scripture, novelists, theologians, famous individuals and ordinary married couples — for making marriage work, along with reflections on the meaning of marriage and the personal growth of spouses.

Are We There Yet?

Sara and Justin discuss one of their first family holidays as a married couple and look forward to celebrating Advent and Christmas as a family, too. Do you have a special family Advent or Christmas tradition to suggest for the newlyweds?

The Immaculate Conception

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, a feast celebrated on December 8, is the national patroness of the United States. Yet the term “Immaculate Conception” is often misunderstood. What does it mean?

December 1, 2011

(Reader’s Tip) When we first got married my husband took a lot of solo business trips. I would pack his suitcase for the week. In every set of clothes I would put a card or a note for that day.

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2011 December, available at: ForYourMarriage.org
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