All About Marriage

Marriage is the process by which two people make their relationship public, official, and permanent. It is the joining of two people in a bond that putatively lasts until death, but in practice is increasingly cut short by divorce. Of course, over the course of a relationship that can last as many as seven or eight decades, a lot happens. Personalities change, bodies age, and romantic love waxes and wanes. And no marriage is free of conflict. What enables a couple to endure is how they handle that conflict. So how do you manage the problems that inevitably arise? And how can you keep the spark alive?

Recent Posts on Marriage

Five Fighting Words That Hurt Your Relationship

Do you fight dirty? These five words are hurting your relationship.

10 Ways Coupling Has Changed Over the Past 75 Years

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on October 02, 2015 Living Single
In some significant ways, over the past three-quarters of a century, couples have been acting more like single people.

Brian Austin Green: Ringing in a New Start?

By Jane Greer Ph.D. on October 01, 2015 Shrink Wrap
Taking off your wedding band?

Is Marriage Worth It For Women?

By Noam Shpancer Ph.D. on October 01, 2015 Insight Therapy
Why are women more likely than men to initiate divorce?

The 3 Dimensions of Communication

By Marty Babits on September 29, 2015 The Middle Ground
The 3 dimensions of communication plus 6 tips to help you make the most of them.

Secrets of a Long and Happy Marriage

By Aldo Civico Ph.D. on September 28, 2015 Turning Point
How do you keep the love tank full? Discover the secrets of long and happy marriages.

How to Fight Better

Recent research suggests that how you start a fight is more important than how you end it.

6 Ways to Tell if You’re Dating a Narcissist

While narcissists can be attractive, entertaining, sharp, and funny to watch from a distance, you don’t want to date or marry one. If you are already entangled with one, you may be reeling with confusion, self-doubt, and damaged self-esteem. Unfortunately, the chances of hooking up with a narcissist at some time in your dating or relationship life are pretty strong.

Want More And Better Sex? Get Married And Stay Married.

The belief that singles have more and better sex than marrieds has become a cultural myth that researchers and sociologists are finding to be untrue, and coming up with some hard evidence to substantiate this claim.

Love of Single Life: The Quintessential Modern Love?

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on September 26, 2015 Living Single
At a time when there are more than 100 million single people just in the US, there are still people denying that any of them could be truly happy. Research shows that people get angry at single people who choose to be single. What's that about?

Love is Lovely, but Hate Gives Love its Teeth

By Karen L Smith MSS, LCSW on September 25, 2015 Full Living
Hate is a normal part of mature, relevant love. A love that holds the reality of hate is stronger and can withstand the trials of time in a way that new, idealized love could never hold a candle to.

Overcoming Intimate Relationship Dynamics

You cannot be happy in love without being compassionate and kind.

Married With Children . . . and Divorced Friends

By Wendy Paris on September 22, 2015 Splitopia
It can be hard for married parents to reassure their own children about the permanence of marriage, given the high divorce rate and other changes in the "typical" American family. Parents can talk to their children about the durability of family. Those of us in positive post-marriage relationships can help spread of sense of stability within our communities.

National Singles Week: 19 Reasons Why We Need It

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on September 20, 2015 Living Single
National Unmarried and Single Americans Week, recognized by the Census Bureau for more than a decade, is a celebration of single people and a way of recognizing their contributions as friends, family members, workers, voters, volunteers, neighbors, and community members.

For Better, For Worse

By E E Smith on September 20, 2015 Not Born Yesterday
We in California have a reputation for being swingers, due in part to Hollywood and movie stars like Elizabeth Taylor. In reply to a reporter's question about whether she respected the institution of marriage, she said she respected it so much that she had said "I do" to seven husbands. And to one of them, Richard Burton, she had said it twice.

Even True Lovers Sometimes Feel They’ve Fallen Out of Love.

Maybe I’m kind of crazy myself, but I can’t help it. Our relationship is the most important thing in my life and when we’re not in sync, it’s hell. And when we’re connected, it’s heaven.

Remember Who You Love Even in the Worst fights: 8 Strategies

By Karen L Smith MSS, LCSW on September 19, 2015 Full Living
Fighting with our partner can bring out the absolute worst in us and them. We can change that. And as a reward, we will gain access to some of the core issues that are preventing us from living our life to the fullest.

Micromanaging Every Move: A Coercive Control Tactic

Coercive Control is not about one partner simply being “bossy” or “a nag;” it’s about domination.

The Problem of the Self-Loathing Single Person

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on September 16, 2015 Living Single
In one brief essay, a nationally syndicated columnist ascribed some of the nastiest stereotypes about single people to himself, and perpetuated a long list of myths about the purported superiority of married people and their children. Science doesn't support his self-loathing or his singlism.

7 Things You Need to Know If a Partner Betrayed You

Thanks to the recent Ashley Madison hack and data dump, countless unsuspecting spouses are learning they’ve been cheated upon by their significant other.

Why You (Really!) Shouldn't Argue When You're Angry

By Garth Sundem on September 15, 2015 Brain Candy
When you’re angry, an argument becomes about the person and not the situation.

How to Tell the Kids You’re Getting Divorced

Divorcing parents meet with me because they worry terribly about the effect that learning of divorce will have on their kids. They want to know the specifics, of course, such as when is a good time to tell, who should do the telling, and what should be said. But beneath those practical inquiries lies the real reason for the session – will my child be okay?

Single and Lonely? The Truth May Be Exactly the Opposite.

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on September 14, 2015 Living Single
Who is most likely to maintain social ties with parents, siblings, friends, and neighbors? Who is likely to help those people and receive help from them? Is it married people? Previously married people? People who have always been single? The answer is always the same, and it comes from nationally representative surveys.

Why Little Things Are Worth Getting Upset About

“Take it easy. Chill out. Relax. Cool down. Don’t stress out. Lighten up. You’re making a mountain out of a molehill. It’s not a big deal.”

Do I Have to Know Who I Am to Find True Love?

It is possible that the very notion of being "ready for love" can serve as a powerful defense against it. Many of us cling to the belief that self-knowledge, perhaps even self-love, is the missing ingredient in our histories of failed attempts. Do you wish you knew yourself much better? Do you imagine that if you did, everything would fall into place? Then read on...

Evolutionary Love: An Interview With Dr. Marc Gafni

By Mark Matousek on September 08, 2015 Ethical Wisdom
What does it mean to eroticize our daily lives? And why is it so important to do so?

Whatever You Do, Stop Sliding In(to) Marriage

There is no magic bullet when it comes to committed relationships. But if we know how to build a good foundation, success and happiness are much more likely to happen. The worst we can do is sliding into a type of relationship that is doomed. Take a stance. Stand up. It is hardly ever too late.

How to Rebalance an Out-of-balanced Life

As many of us have learned from experience, knowing what you “should” do, or what you have been told you “need to do” isn’t always enough to get yourself back on track to what it is that you really want to do.

Is Your Partner Too Controlling?

Are you feeling controlled by your partner? Assess your relationship.

Avoiding Ashley Madison

You cannot "spot" a cheater, but you may be able to "detect" one if you know what to look for and where to look.