Saturday, February 18, 2012

Details About Your Next Relationship

Hi Everyone, 

Take a look at all the buildings. Take a look at the cars. Take a look at the houses. Take a look at the streets, look at the highways. Take a look at everything you see around you today, and ask yourself, “What is the common denominator to all of this?”

It's called a foundation. Everything that's built - whether it's a car, a house, a building - is built from the ground up, one piece at a time. The car cannot run without the drive train and the wheels. The building cannot stand tall in the sky without the base. The house would fall over if not for the frame. 

So, how does this relate to your life? I want you to look back today at all your past relationships, and ask yourself, “If I spent more time on the foundation, could those relationships have worked better?” We get so caught up in the beginning of a relationship and how great we're feeling. We love what we're feeling. We’re amazed at what we're feeling.

It's always about the feeling: that feeling of being loved, the feeling of seeing something for the first time, the feeling great sex. It's all about feelings. The problem is that when we are so caught up in Feeling Land, we tend to overlook some of the cracks in the foundation that may come up in the future. 

Relationships are no different than a building or a company, whatever it might be. Everything needs a solid foundation. 

So, the next time you get involved in a relationship - and I'm not telling you not to embrace the feeling, because your feelings are definitely justified—spend more time working on the foundations of love and understanding. Work towards understanding their love language, understanding their needs, wants, and desires, and giving them what they need. This is the building of a foundation. 

They need to do the same thing for you, because if not, then the love that you're building will not last. If we do this right, and we ignore those feelings of lust, then we’ll get a little sense of reason in our heads. Our relationships will stand a much better chance to survive. 

Dating Principles For Great Relationships

A relationship is a building. It’s the park; it’s the house;l it's your entire universe. It could be the foundation of so many amazing things that happen to you. So if you're dating someone now, think about the foundation first, and embrace the feelings, and make sure the foundation is solid. 

I want all of you to have a really successful love life.

Your friend,

David Wygant

Dating Principles For Great Relationships

Friday, February 17, 2012

Top 5 Myths Men Believe About Women

By Marcus Osborne

A while back I wrote about the Top 5 Myths that Women STILL Believe About Men. The response from readers was swift and emotional and enlightening. It was fascinating to witness the back and forth between the men (most of whom agreed with me) and women, who seemed reluctant to cede that many of their long-held beliefs about guys were either patently untrue or were watered down by the passage of time.

Well now you get to return the favor. I decided to jot down guys’ favorite myths guys believe about women. I’d like you to tell me if we’re on the money or not. And please don’t tell me that you “can’t generalize.” Of course you can generalize! We all do it every single day! So here goes...

1. The Best Aphrodisiac is a Fat Wallet: You want to know what makes a nerdy guy hot? Big bucks. Money is the great equalizer. Women who say it isn’t are being terribly disingenuous. I’m not saying it’s ALL that matters, but it’s a massive game changer. Let’s be honest here, okay? Pop superstar Seal is going through a divorce with supermodel Heidi Klum, right? Seal has always hooked up with some of the hottest women around.

Seal is not Mr. Pretty Boy. So, how did he do it? He’s got one of the all-time GREAT pick up lines. “Hi, I’m Seal, pop superstar.”
Deal sealed.

Not saying he’s not a very nice guy. I don’t know him. But I AM saying that Heidi Klum is far more willing to get to know Seal the pop star than she would be with Seal the Taco Bell Shift Leader. No offense to Taco Bell. Their Tacos are delicious.

2. The Green-Eyed Monster is Welcomed: I didn’t want to believe this one, but after having a couple of women shout me down about it, I’m inclined to join the ranks of the believers. Apparently, women really get bothered when their man doesn’t get jealous. I was told in no uncertain terms by one young lady, “If I was going out for a night on the town with girlfriends, looking all hot, I’d be a bit annoyed if my guy wasn’t a little jealous.”

This was a shock to me, since I regard jealousy as an almost useless emotion. But clearly I was mistaken in my attempt to engage in a debate with her as her two friends chimed in with a  well-timed, “Me, too!” and an emphatic “Exactly!”

They went on to say that they secretly enjoyed the thought of their man feeling those pangs of jealousy when another guy not-so-slyly checks her out.

Wow. Who knew? I’m now a believer.

Related: Top 10 Things Guys Wish They Could Say (Without Getting in the Doghouse)

3.  You Can Take A Woman's “Love Number” and Multiply by 2: This is a funny one. While guys tend to lie about their number of sexual partners by rounding the number up, women tend to fudge the truth by rounding down. They Usually justify the figure with various qualifiers like how old they were at the time, how serious the relationship was, how long the encounter actually lasted… and what people will think of her if she gave up the REAL number. But a good rule of thumb is-- take her number and multiply by two.

4. Bad Boys Are The First Picks: Sure, women say they want nice guys. Women don’t want nice guys. For as far back as any guy can remember, the guy who worked hardest at being an a-hole was the guy who had a constant rotation of delightful women. The Bad Boy had all types of women. The nice girls, the not-so-nice girls, the nerdy girls, the sorority girls, the professional women, the shy women – this guy manages to get them all! And even when ladies realize that this guy is kind of a jerk, they STILL stick it out with him in hopes of “changing him.” Does the nice guy stand a chance? Yes, he does. Eventually after "Bad Boy" has drained the trust out of every women he encounters, THOSE women finally settle for the nice guy. And of course there’s another way the nice guy can finish first… see myth number 1.

Related: 5 Ways Nice Guys Can Finish First

5. Women Cheat Too - They're Just BETTER At It: Women are simply more skilled at this game than men. Part of it has to do with their ability to plan and plot their covert encounters and part of it has to do with the fact that most of us guys are fairly ignorant about these matters because men don't have the built in BS detector that women seem to possess. Most guys just don't believe that THEIR partner is capable of such deception, so we're already walking around with blinders on. Couple that specific belief to the general belief that women don't cheat as much as men, in general, and you have the recipe for a successful illicit affair. 

Think about it... you always hear about the men getting CAUGHT, not quite as much with the women -- even though statistics tell us that roughly 54% of women admit having had affairs in any relationship compared to 57% of men who made the same admission.

So there you have it. The fellas believe these all to be true. Are we wrong?

Read more: galtime

3 Mistakes Women Make In The Bedroom


Who doesn’t need to spice up their bedroom routine every once in a while? You love your partner and assume he’ll initiate sex, so it’s all good, right? Not so fast! Did you ever think about what YOUR role is…what you could be doing to turn up the heat? We did, so we asked renowned sex expert and family therapist Dr. Jane Greer. She says women COMMONLY make THREE MISTAKES in the bedroom:

Mistake #1: Comfy Clothes
I know, ladies, that you want to be in those those comfortable nightgowns, those comfortable jammies, that you wear. But, honestly, the quickest turn-off to your partner or spouse are your comfy clothes. So, if you want to spice things up in your love life, shed those comfy clothes and find a ice, hot bra or a nice nighty, something you can be slinky, sexy and comfortable in that will be a TURN-ON to your partner.

Mistake #2: NOT Taking the Lead Don’t wait to get asked to dance, meaning  you’ve got to take the lead. You don’t have to wait for your partner to ask you to have sex or make love with them. Get involved, get into bed, take the lead and get your partner into bed with you. You’ll both have a lot of fun and enjoy yourselves.
Mistake #3: Criticism
It's to be avoided at all costs. Nothing will turn off your partner faster than you telling him what you DON'T like and what you don't want taking place. On the other hand, what will be a complete arousal and turn-on is letting him know what he CAN do to please you and what will excite you if he does it.
So, tell him what you like, wear those sexy clothes and, most importantly of all, take the lead so that you can have the fun you're looking for!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Do Sleepover Friends Prevent a Real Relationship? When Friends with Benefits isn’t Beneficial at All

By Rosie Munger

“…the only relationship that can make both partners happy is one in which sentimentality has no place and neither partner makes any claim on the life and freedom of the other. ” 
 - Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

We all know that mutual respect and clear ground rules are as essential to a “friends with benefits” relationship as physical chemistry. Even in the most fun, straight-forward scenarios, one or both of the parties run the risk of developing deeper feelings and getting hurt – this is not earth-shattering news. Yet there is another risk, perhaps an even greater one: do these “erotic friendships,” as Kundera’s Tomas called them, keep us from finding more significant relationships? 

When I posed this question to some friends, I expected a pretty resounding, “Yes!” I was sure that my friends who had been in these situations would share with me that they missed out on finding more meaningful relationships because they’d allowed themselves to become too involved with their special friends. I was certainly surprised when the first two people to respond told me that they actually met their husbands while in a “friends with benefits” relationship with someone else. Another friend explained that she has these relationships because she refuses to settle with someone she knows is not a good long-term match; alternatively, she enjoys fun times with her friends instead of being miserable in a more committed relationship heading nowhere.

These three women are confident, fun and caring individuals, so their stories made me question my initial theory. Well, it turns out the next few voices were on the completely opposite side of the fence. One universal truth about human kind: what works for one person does not necessarily work for another. Not everyone wants to be with one single partner, not everyone wants to be in love. However, if you do want these things, get to know yourself and be clear about your emotional needs. For many, the physical and emotional cannot be separated, no matter how hard you try. While protecting your heart is of the utmost importance, ensuring your sex buddy does not impede on the rest of your dating life is crucial. 

If you are in a FWB situation or are thinking of starting one, be wary of these three signs that suggest you might miss out on the more significant relationship you desire: 

1. You find yourself planning your schedule around hanging out with your FWB. 
It’s great to make time for each other, but this should not be your primary relationship. If you are spending more free time together than you are apart, it’s time to evaluate what’s really going on. What are your motivations? Is FWB really all you want? By putting so much time and energy into this person the likelihood of you meeting other potential love interests decreases significantly.

2. You have stopped looking for other dating opportunities. 
Do you think more about when you’ll see your FWB next than how you’re going to meet other dating prospects? Having a physical relationship with someone who also puts you at ease can be a security blanket. It is easy to become lazy.
Julie weighed in, “Having a FWB sometimes makes people not try very hard to put their best foot forward in the dating game as they know they have something on the back burner that makes them comfortable.”

3. Your feelings are deepening but you know it’s not mutual.
Falling for someone who does not return your love can be difficult under any circumstances, yet when you share a physical closeness it is easier to believe that the situation might change. It is common to cling to the relationship, hoping that someday your feelings will be reciprocated. Don’t follow this route to a potential broken heart. It’s time to end the FWB relationship and make yourself fully available to people who desire the deep relationship you seek. 

Maintaining a physical relationship with someone you enjoy can be fun, but if you think you’re becoming stagnant in the kind of relationship you do not ultimately crave, it’s time to move on. 

3 Sure Signs You're Dating Your Drinking Buddy

By Lindsay Ross for

It's always a relationship plus when two individuals have similar common interests. Whether it's music, nature, sports, sci-fi or sky diving - it always tends to build a stronger more intimate connection. Sharing a mutual love can help foster the passion between two people. Yet, what if you're discovering your only common interests are happy hours, night caps, and the local watering hole? You may have a problem. 

If the following three occurrences are happening in your current relationship, it's a sure sign you are simply dating a drinking companion. A drinking companion is not a suitable partner.

1. You Met As Regulars At Your Favorite Bar 

Love can be found anywhere, there is no denying it, but if you have begun to date the guy who sits next to you at happy hour every Tuesday and Thursday, this may lead to problems. If you met one time and continue to see each other outside of the drinking scene that is completely fine. If you were friends who only knew of each other from the bar and continue to utilize the bar as a starting point for dates - drinking will be the only thing you have in common. Often times the only thing that differentiates the relationship before "dating" this bar friend is mattress time. That's not good.

2. You Only Do Drinking Activities When You Are Together 

Drinking is a fun activity to incorporate into the correct outings but if you drink every single time you are together - this is another red flag. Although it may be fun to include multiple cocktails into a date, it doesn't give you time to be sober and really get to know the person or vice versa. Drinking gives you an excuse to not be yourself 100% - if you are dating someone who is always drinking with you, how are you both really going to know each other? Drinking once and a while is fine, drinking every single time equates into a drinking buddy.

3. All Your Conversations Are About Your Drinking Activities 

Between the late nights out and sleeping in on Saturday you never seem to have a serious conversation. Sure you talk about the crazy lady at the club or all the people you saw out last night, but what about your family, children and career? If you are only sharing this one aspect of your life with an individual and they are doing the same - you only have drinking in common and that will only be damaging in the long run. 

If you are reading this and finding it is eerily similar to your current relationship, then we're sorry to break it to you, but it's not a healthy relationship. Constantly drinking with someone does not allow individuals to become vulnerable and build a solid, sober connection. If you find yourself in this position, try doing other activities with the individual without drinking. If you cannot find each other interesting outside of the bar scene, cut your losses and move on.

Dating For Love



new study in the Feb. issue of The Journal of Communication has analyzed online dating profiles compared to the people who made them and discovered the ways daters lie about themselves. The researchers concluded that howsomeone describes himself or herself is about as important as what personal information they share. While the research is not guaranteed to decipher the truth-tellers from the Pinocchios, there are some words and other clues (whether the fellas are aware of them or not) that can help you weed out the liars when you're online dating. Here are seven signs that your potential match may be less than honest:

He Doesn't Mention Food
If a guy's lying about his physical appearance, he'll avoid words like "food" and "eating."

He Uses a Lot of Motion Words
Because lying is more difficult, it's easier to throw in motion words like "walk," "move," and "go."

He Avoids Negative Emotion Words
If he's trying to appear like Mr. Perfect when he's far from it, he's going to avoid negative words like "hate," "worthless," and "sorry."

He Doesn't Use Personal Pronouns
A liar will distance himself from the fake info by avoiding personal pronouns like "I," "me," and "myself."

He Uses Negations
Instead of saying he's happy or excited, a liar is more likely to use negations like "not sad" and "not boring," as well as words like "no" and "never."

His Profile Is Short
Liars tend to have shorter profiles in order to keep the lies they have to remember to a minimum.

He Talks a Lot About Work
While a man who's lying about his weight is likely to use less food and eating-related words, he's more likely to talk about his work success and achievements.

Online Dating: How to Figure Out If He's Lying in His Profile

by John Ortved

So you met this totally cute guy on He has great arms and a cool job, reasonably braggy pictures and a decent head of hair. One question: is he a total liar? Now there’s a way to tell.
Researchers at University of Wisconsin-Madison have cracked the code, according to Wired magazine. Their research shows that the more someone avoids using the pronoun “I” in their online dating profiles, the more likely it is that he is lying about things like age, height and weight.
"Liars do this because they want to distance themselves from their deceptive statements," said Catalina Toma, communication science professor at the university.
People who lie will also choose negation over a plain statement. So that “happy” becomes “not sad” or “energetic” becomes “not boring.” According to Toma, liars do this because they feel they have a lot of explaining to do, they bear a heavy “cognitive load” so they keep it short and general (so they have less to explain later).
Also, people who use unrepresentative photos will avoid talking about their looks, and will focus instead on their accomplishments.
Around 80 percent of the online daters surveyed lied about something. Makes you think!
Do you believe everything when you read a guy’s online dating profile? What do you lie about on yours?
Have a question about Dating, Relationships, or Sex for Single John? Submit it here. Can be totally Anonymous!

Read More glamour

Dating For Love

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Girl Talk: How I Quit Stalking Guys On Facebook And Twitter

By Jennifer Garam

It all started a few years ago with an ex and one innocent Google search. In a moment of missing Jeremy*, a guy I’d dated a couple of years earlier, I typed his name and pressed “Enter,” thinking, What could it hurt? It did hurt though when the results returned an article about him and his new girlfriend, whom, I read, he now lived with.

Despite how painful this news was, after that initial Google I became addicted to looking him up online. My cocktail of choice was one parts Googling, two parts his blog, and three parts Twitter. With these sources mixed together, I could feel like I was somehow still connected to him. I was hooked, and I’d go through periods of reading his Twitter several times a day, every day.

“I don’t think Jeremy’s the right guy for me,” I said to my therapist one day, trying to convince myself that it was all for the best that things hadn’t worked out between us. “He drinks too much, he’s always Tweeting about getting wasted. And he flirts with tons of women on Twitter. I’d be so jealous, I’d hate that if we were dating.”

“Jen …” my therapist said. “He’s not the right guy for you because he lives with his girlfriend.”

But even though he was wrong for me for all these reasons and more, I continued to check for updates of how much he’d drank and how many women he was flirting with. I found out he got married by seeing it on Twitter. I discovered they had a baby by reading about it on his blog.

The upside of learning that he had a baby was that it was so extreme it made it easy for me to quit cold turkey. Woken up to the fact that he’d undeniably moved on and I was stuck in the past, I was jolted out of my addictive pattern. I didn’t want to check his Twitter anymore, and luckily I’d never accepted his Facebook friend request years before because given our on-again, off-again relationship, I’d anticipated that that could one day become a problem.

A few months later, I started seeing Mark*. Early on, I knew he was looking me up on Facebook and Twitter because he often referenced things I’d posted about in our conversations. It didn’t take long until I found myself regularly checking his social media, too, especially at times when he was out of touch.

If he hadn’t responded to an email I’d sent, I wanted to think that it was just because he was busy at work. But if he was so busy, I wondered, how did he have time to read and re-tweet seven New York Times articles? And why did he have so many new Facebook friends, and why were they all pretty 22-year-old girls who interned at The New Yorker, vacationed in Paris, and wore bikinis in their profile pictures?

Almost everything I saw on his Facebook and Twitter was upsetting for one reason or another, yet I couldn’t keep from looking at it daily. At the time I was unemployed and home alone all day, and checking his social media deceptively felt like contact and interaction, when in reality it only made me feel more isolated and alone.

When he abruptly ended things, I was devastated. And that’s when looking him up on Facebook and Twitter got really bad. As much as I knew it made me feel horrible and wanted to stop, I couldn’t. Compelled to keep checking, I noticed that I’d feel an initial high from having this small form of contact, followed by an intense low. It was like his social media was a drug and I had taken a hit.

After describing this feeling to a friend, she suggested that I count days off his social media. I couldn’t remember if I’d already checked that day, so that night I looked him up on Facebook one last time. The next day was Day 1. And then, like a junkie counting days off heroin, I kept counting. One day turned into a week and then two, and once I had some success under my belt, I was determined not to break my streak.

For the first month, I cheated a little. I wouldn’t look him up but we were still Facebook friends, so I’d scroll through my news feed scanning for his updates. One night, when I posted about something I’d written, he immediately “liked” it. Staring at his name next to the thumbs up symbol, I couldn’t breathe.

Is he thinking of me? Does he miss me? Does he still care about me?

My heart was racing and I was overwhelmed with sadness, longing, and missing him. I knew that having any connection whatsoever to him would just lead to more pain, so I unfriended him.

Even though I hadn’t wanted to sever all social media ties with Mark, I immediately felt better once he wasn’t popping up in my news feed anymore. Thinking back, I realized that nothing good had ever come out of looking up a crush, guy I was dating, or ex on Facebook. I’d never once done this and then thought, Wow, now I feel really good about myself! Regardless of the guy and whether or not he was currently in my life, there were always photos and wall posts that could be misinterpreted—or correctly interpreted—to make me feel jealous and insecure.

Part of the reason checking a guy’s Facebook or Twitter is so compelling is that seems like this totally harmless thing you do when you’re bored or curious that only takes a couple of seconds. But it can actually be very self-destructive, and a waste of time at best. In my experience, it robbed me of time and energy that could have been better spent focusing on myself, and took a toll on my self-esteem.

For anyone who’s counting, it’s been over a year since I checked Mark’s Facebook or Twitter, and about six months ago I quit looking up all exes online. Period. Don’t think I’m going to start looking to get that social media fix with any new guys either. This may sound incredibly old-fashioned, but I’d prefer not to know anything about the next man I date other than what he tells me. These days, I’m not even tempted to pick up this old behavior again because quitting has given me such a tremendous payoff, freeing up my time and energy so I can put it firmly back where it belongs—on the status of my own life.
*Names have been changed

Dating For Love

Study: Online Role-Playing Games Hurt Marriages

The Couple That Plays Together...

Online role playing games negatively affect real-life marital satisfaction, according to a new Brigham Young University study published today in the Journal of Leisure Research.

The study reports that 75 percent of spouses of sword-carrying, avatar-loving gamers wish they would put less effort into their guilds and more effort into their marriage. The researchers, led by graduate student Michelle Ahlstrom, and recreation management professor Neil Lundberg, studied 349 couples to learn how online role-playing games such as World of Warcraft, affect marital satisfaction for both gamers and their spouses. And in some cases, gaming even increased satisfaction.

“It’s common knowledge that many couples experience challenges around gaming,” Lundberg said. “Particularly when husbands are heavy gamers, it clearly has a negative impact on their marriages.”

What the researchers found confirms popular opinion, with some interesting new details. The study revealed it’s not the time spent playing games that caused dissatisfaction, but rather the resulting arguments or disrupted bedtime routines. These issues can cause problems such as poorer marital adjustment, less time spent together in shared activities and less serious conversation, the study reports.

“It’s not the hours that make a difference,” Lundberg said. “It’s really what it does to the relationship– whether or not it creates conflict and quarreling over the game.”

The study showed that gaming is dominated by men, but there is a contingent of women gamers who play with their spouses.

“We didn’t realize that there was a whole group of couples who game together,” Lundberg said. “In those gaming couples where the marital satisfaction was low, the same issues existed. For example, if they argued about gaming and bedtime rituals were interrupted, even though they gamed together, they still had lower marital satisfaction scores.”

However, the study found that for couples in which both spouses play, 76 percent said that gaming has a positive effect on their marital relationship. Interestingly, for those who do game together, interacting with each others avatars–their online persona—leads to higher marital satisfaction. However, both must be satisfied with their mutual participation, especially the individual who plays less.

“Not all video games are bad,” said Ahlstrom, the graduate student. “Some are fun leisure pursuits that when played together may strengthen your relationships with others. With any type of gaming, consider the content of the game. Consider what you are doing in the game, how much time it is taking, how it is affecting you, your schooling, work, sleep, body and especially how it is affecting your spouse and marital relationship.”

The researchers believe the problem could be more severe than the study shows because they found many dedicated gamers were not willing to participate in the study. The average age of the respondents to their nationwide survey was 33, and the average marriage length was 7 years. Of those couples in which only one spouse gamed, 84 percent of the players were the husbands. Of those couples where both gamed, 73 percent of those who gamed more were husbands.

“This study really does verify that gaming has an effect on marital satisfaction,” Lundberg said. “It’s not just a random occurrence that a few couples are dealing with. Based on the large number of married gamers – 36 percent of multi-player online role-playing gamers report being married– we can assume this is a widespread issue.”

Should Schools Teach Teens How To Be Good Spouses?


If we take classes to learn the skills we need to survive in the world at large, as well as the working world, should we take classes to learn how to be a good spouse, too?

About a week ago, Utah Rep. Dixon Pitcher introduced a bill that would require would-be spouses to wait at least three days after obtaining a license before getting married, unless they took premarital training first. Wyoming introduced a similar bill; couples that didn't attend three hours of marriage counseling would have to wait a year before getting a marriage license. Other states have tried to pass legislation that would require counseling before couples could divorce.

Clearly there's a movement to get people -- with the help of teachers and counselors -- to think before marrying or divorcing. It sounds like a good idea, but do marriage prep courses work?

Yes and no, according to a 2010 Brigham Young University study, which examined about 50 such classes around the country. Yes, the classes significantly increased couples' communication skills. No, the classes didn't improve relationship quality or satisfaction.

As one researcher noted, "Engaged couples are so in love that they can't be more satisfied. Their heads are bumping against the ceiling."

Maybe trying to talk sense into young lovers who are about to walk down the aisle is too late. Perhaps we should start talking about what makes for a healthy marriage in high school; at least that's what the majority of responders in an informal survey Susan Pease Gadoua and I offered as part of our research for our book, "The New I Do," indicated.

Is there a place for marital education amid algebra, environmental ed and world history classes?

Some high schools already offer that. In 1998, Florida became the first state to require a class on relationships and marriage for high school students, part of a larger plan to encourage marriage skills by discounting marriage licenses for couples that take a premarital skills course. The mandate hasn't had much impact because "loopholes in the law make it easy to avoid changing the education curriculum," according to the conservative Heritage Foundation.

Loopholes or not, many see a need for such high school classes. In 2000, long-time teacher Marlene Pearson was asked by the National Marriage Project to review the effectiveness of several marriage and relationship programs used in schools. As she says in her study, "Can Kids Get Smart About Marriage," youths are:

Confused and misguided about the differences between sex and love, living together and marriage, manhood and fatherhood. They get little help or accurate information from their elders. The Baby Boom generation, veterans of the sexual and divorce revolution, has little to say, and certainly not much good to say, about marriage. This leaves young people like my students with few clues as to how they achieve a goal they almost universally seek. They have to try to figure it out by themselves. But the sad truth is that it is hard to figure out marriage on your own. Most young adults in most societies across the world are able to depend on the teachings and traditions of the larger community in life matters as consequential as finding a lifelong mate and getting married. But very little guidance is available in our society today, and what guidance there is comes from Hollywood and Madison Avenue. As a result, young adults are floundering and often failing in their personal and family lives.

But are high schools -- most of which have had to lay off teachers and staff because of budget cutbacks and are struggling to boost academic scores to keep up with new legislation -- the best place to teach kids about marriage? As a spokesman for the Florida Education Association noted, "Were schools designed to do this much socialization and values clarification? Many teachers would argue it would be great if they could focus more on academic subjects and worry less about these."

At one point, eight other states besides Florida addressed statewide school-based marriage education. Initiatives failed in Arizona, Utah and New Mexico. South Carolina dropped a program after using it for five years.

South Dakota uses the Connections curriculum, which focuses on marriage and relationship communications skills; a 2004 study of the program found marginal success -- some students felt somewhat more negatively about divorce and somewhat more positively toward premarital counseling. But because it was an elective class, the students who most needed to learn marital skills didn't benefit because they didn't sign up for the class.

Are teenagers good subjects for learning marital skills anyway? Maybe, especially if you look at them in love. Adolescents "are often more focused on how they feel about the relationship and what they are getting out of it rather than a mutual process that includes how the other person feels about the relationship," according to Brenda McDaniel, assistant professor of psychology at Kansas State University, who has been studying how 18- to 20-year-old dating couples handle conflict.

But the bigger question is, what marital skills do we teach and what kind of marriage are we talking about? "Traditional" marriage, as the Heritage Foundation stresses? What do we teach teens who are gay or lesbian, or kids who are being raised by choice mothers or have two fathers or two mothers? What message will we send teens if schools promote a husband-wife marriage as the only healthy -- or "real" -- relationship?

Should we be teaching teens how to be a good spouse? And, if so, what do we teach and who should do it?

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | Modern Warfare 3