Better Together: Fighting, Trust, Sex, and Love

written by Nathan & Kelli

Better Together: a weekly newsletter with ideas on how to improve your marriage and how to live a happy and productive life.

From Our Lives

This week, for probably the first time in a month or so, we had an argument that lasted longer than 10 minutes. How much more? Well we won’t talk about that. 😉

After these types of arguments we often write down things we could have done better to help the argument be more productive. Here are a few of our notes:

  • Listen to understand the other person’s point of view. (Physically turn towards them. Paraphrase. Ask questions.)
  • Calm down. (What are you feeling? Are you letting your thoughts agitate you or are you focusing on how you can help the discussion?)
  • What do I think about this conversation? (Am I looking to learn or am I trying to ignore?)

We find taking a few notes after an argument helps us see things in a more positive light. When we come out of an argument with a mindset of learning, instead of a mindset of feeling like a failure for arguing with our spouse, we can better see that we are achieving our goals of growth. Even if we took a small step backwards.

The Couple Project

“Spiritual intimacy during sex ultimately depends on the desire to be united with your spouse. And that desire is fed throughout the day—by concentrating on what you love about each other, by thinking about each other, by flirting and playing together, by making positive statements about each other to friends. It isn’t something that “just happens.” It’s the culmination of a relationship you already have.” ~ Sheila Gregorie

— From our newest article: “31 Days to Great Sex” - Book Review

Quotes from what we have been reading

“You want [love] to provide for you what you think you cannot give yourself: stability, security, hope, happiness. So long as you function on this belief, you place “love” as being something that is outside of you when the reality is that you cannot see, create or experience on the outside what you are not already on the inside.”

Brianna Wiest

“Giving feedback to someone is a “moment of trust” – an opportunity to either build or erode trust in the relationship. If you deliver feedback with competence and care, the level of trust in your relationship can leap forward… For most [of us], giving feedback is not our most pleasurable task. Having been on both sides of the conversation, giving feedback and receiving it, I know it can be awkward and uncomfortable. However, I’ve also come to learn and believe that people not only need to hear the honest truth…, they deserve it. Most people don’t [get up] in the morning and say to themselves, “I can’t wait to be a poor performer today!” We do a disservice... if we don’t give [each other] candid and caring feedback.”

Randy Conley

“Happy relationships aren’t relationships where there is no fighting. They are relationships where repairs are made after regrettable incidents happen—and where a couple connects with each other day to day. Happy couples are not so very different from unhappy couples; they are simply able to make repairs to their relationship easier and faster so they can get back to the joy of being together.”

— “Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime of Love” by John Gottman, et al. (and others)

Superhero Quote

“This Isn't About Fighting Wars. It's About Ending Them.”

— Carol Danvers in Captain Marvel (2019)

Now, go give your spouse a hug and tell them you love them!

Written and published by Nathan & Kelli.

ps. Next month, for “The Couple Project”, our theme is money and we’ll be reading one of our favorite money books “The Weathy Barber Returns” by David Chilton.

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The purpose of “The Couple Project” is to learn more about what makes a strong marriage or relationship. We share what we are learning, what ideas we are trying, and which ideas help improve our relationship. We realize not everything that works for us will work for you, but we still hope you will find our journey valuable. Please subscribe to our newsletter and send us any questions or feedback.


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