Live your best marriage
Discover Your Couple D.N.A: Enhance & future proof your marriage
Finding a person so special that you want to spend the rest of your life with them is rare. As you know… we don’t just fall in love with anyone.
Our attachment to our primary person is one of the most important bonds we ever make in life.
And marriage is one of the most important commitments we will ever make.
And it needs to be taken seriously.
And it needs to be protected.
50 % of marriages fail. That is, 1 in 2 marriages end in divorce. And second marriages have a 75% chance of failing. That is really concerning.
At the start of our relationship we see the best in our partner. And they mirror back the best in us. It feels wonderful. It feels like we are getting all of our important needs met – to feel seen, heard and valued (as well as some unconscious needs from childhood!). We are both focused on meeting the other’ needs & giving each other our full attention, affection and allowing.
So it is unimaginable that our connection could waver. That we could experience the stress and conflict that others do that led to separation. But over time our differences become more apparent. Yet difference is NOT the problem. It’s a huge part of our attraction. (We can grow more as human beings if we can honour and learn from our partner’s differences.) The problem is that we misunderstand and misinterpret the differences. We create assumptions about our partner’s behaviour – about what it means, or what their intention is, and usually we are wrong. And we have expectations of what are partner ‘should’ do and how they ‘should’ do it – based on our own personality lens and needs, but we don’t know these expectations (they are based on what we would do) and we don’t discuss them until they are not met and then we are angry, hurt and jumping to hurtful conclusions ….“They don’t remember things I told them/they’re not proactive/not sharing their feelings = they don’t care about me”. And they are wrong.
As a relationship and personality psychologist I’ve spent a decade researching and working clinically with couples, and reviewing the science behind thriving relationships and what makes them deteriorate. The Gottman’s research established 4 predictors of divorce : Contempt, criticism, defensiveness and stonewalling. These are the ‘HOW’, the behaviours of each partner. But WHY do they react this way? The two people who said they would care for each other for life? And when I researched the relationship literature for why it commonly states communication problems, differences in sexual appetite, finances, raising children and a lack of emotional intimacy. And again, these are not root causes – they are the ‘WHAT’, the areas of challenge. So, Ive spent a long time understanding the WHY, working with couples married 10, 20 and 30 years to initially explore their conflict through the lens of their two personalities – each of their core beliefs, motivations, attentional biases, core needs and unmet needs. Following our work every couple would say that they wished they’d known all this about themself and their partner at the start of the relationship. We learned all the ways they had conflicted & sadly misinterpreted each other. It became very clear that it was misunderstanding each others motivations and intentions, wrong assumptions & wrong conclusions in 4 primary areas that lead couples into the blame shame cycle they then couldn’t get out of. And once they had accurate insight into these 4 areas -their personalities, their vulnerabilities, attachment styles and needs – each couple and myself agreed that with hindsight, the misunderstandings were predictable and avoidable. And, fortunately, now healable because we had got to the root cause.
So, now I know HOW to protect marriages and prevent hurt and I want you to know this too. I am passionate about helping couples understand each other’s inner worlds accurately and with compassion as early as possible in their primary relationship. I created the Couple D.N.A Program (6-10 hours) to do this. Countless couples have shared it would have prevented conflict. This method includes personality assessments (which are positive!), the ATTUNED communication formula AND the best science of what makes marriages thrive.
Most relationship work is generic – aimed at what ALL couples should do. This method is tailored specifically to each of you – there is no other couple like you in the world. Your dynamics are unique – and need to be understood in the early days, as this will protect and future-proof your marriage. The Couple D.N.A method helps you to truly know the beautiful person you are marrying – and the work primarily covers 4 challenging areas of learning that couples need to be prepared to undertake :
- Increasing self awareness
- Increasing your accurate understanding of one another’s feelings and reactions (when they are different to yours!), True intimacy means In To Me See.
- Knowledge of each others vulnerabilities and needs….& how to meet each other’s in ways that work
- Predicting and preventing relationship rubs/conflict
I want your marriage to flourish – for your connection to be unwaverable, for you to be best friends, to be the source of each others’ comfort, to always have each others’ back, and to be home for each other – until death do you part. And if children come along – the most self aware, attuned parents raise the happiest children.
Make your marriage vows be not only meaningful commitments to one another – but know HOW to honor your vows through the hard times as well as the good.