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Meaningful Married Life

A 2021 Pew Research Study of 17 advanced economies on What Makes Life Meaningful found that relatively few people mention their spouse or romantic partner as an important source of meaning. Two nations on opposites sides of the spectrum are worth mentioning: Nearly one-in-ten U.S. adults (9%) mention their spouse or partner as a source of meaning in their life, while it is among the least-mentioned topics in Taiwan, at less than 1%.

“My wife gives me a reason, not just to survive but to thrive … Her questions and views make me think (and laugh).” – Man, 67, United States

A strong and vibrant marriage is possible according Lissy Puno, a Counselling Psychologist based in Singapore, who explains how to “protect your marriage, repair distancing and disconnection, [and] recover trust, love and commitment” in her book, Affairs Don’t Just Happen,

The book provides insights into marriages that are vulnerable to affairs and describes the different types of affairs, along with the “needs” fulfilled by these affairs. If there has been an affair, helpful information to repair the damage and save the relationship is offered.

Marital Building Blocks

Couples wishing to build a strong and vital marital relationship can put into practice eight key elements outlined in Ms. Puno’s book.

  1. Centered: Know who you are and who you want to be.

  2. Conscious-Curious: Be aware of how you come across to your partner and desire to understand your partner.

  3. Connected: Develop an emotional closeness that comes from spending time together and sharing deep thoughts and feelings with each other.

  4. Caring: Attend to your partner’s feelings, thoughts, desires, interests, and overall well-being.

  5. Calendar: Deliberately place “couple time” on your calendar and guard against distractions.

  6. Communicate: Be available for regular and effective communication.

  7. Cherish: Value your spouse as the number one in your life.

  8. Committed: Establish a foundation which will last through the years, amidst the changes of life.


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