This week, during “Hunt for Happiness Week” we’ve examined whether the hunt for happiness was a cause of affairs, and we discussed whether having an affair (and subsequently, divorcing) results in happiness. Today and tomorrow we’ll be winding down the week by examining the Love Kindlers that are shared by both women and men. Come back tomorrow for Part Two with local tips to find happiness in your relationship or re-discover happiness after an affair.
In the article, “Save money by saving your marriage after infidelity” the idea was proposed to think of the love in a marriage as a campfire. There are actions that a spouse can take that would put out the fire like pouring water on a flame, and those actions are Love Extinguishers. They will kill the flame of love in your marriage. There are other actions that a spouse can take that rekindle the flame and build it back up into a roaring blaze of passion. Those actions are Love Kindlers and they tend to be the actions that make a person happy. The pursuit of happiness is a choice that is made, and usually when a couple marries, it’s because the Love Extinguishers are few, the Love Kindlers are many, and the loved one’s actions coincide with their idea of pursuing happiness. They feel love and feel happy, and that is a positive emotion… so they marry.
If a couple has lost that positive feeling, or if the happiness is draining out of the marriage, it can be regained. Here in Oregon there are GREAT resources help in the hunt for happiness! Step one is to stop doing the actions that extinguish love. There is a series “End of the year fidelity checkup” and it ends with “Restore your marriage by being personally transparent” … for a quick refresher on some of those actions that extinguish the flame of love. Then, in the article, “It’s a new year and a new chance to rebuild love after infidelity” there are two very common Love Kindlers mentioned for each gender, with some local resources. Today let’s go more in depth.
Both men and women have seven categories of Love Kindlers that are basic human needs. They are emotional commitment, spiritual commitment, physical commitment, financial commitment, family commitment, social commitment, security commitment. Here in Oregon, there are rich options to help couples pursue happiness in these seven areas and restore the love in their marriage.
- This is the need to feel and be told that you are loved, valued, respected, trusted, accepted, admired, and appreciated. This is the need to feel and see actions of affection, and the need to know your partner is understanding and forgiving.
- A marriage retreat is a GREAT way to learn how to express love and affection—or to remember how! One recommended retreat in Oregon: Retrouvaille (Feb., June, Aug., Oct.). There may also be marriage retreats sponsored by your denomination or spiritual group.
- This is the need to know that both partners’ spiritual values are supported, to share a spiritual life together, to feel assured that your beliefs are respected. This is the need for moral character qualities such as personal transparency.
- The Willamette Valley, from Portland to Salem, is rich with spiritual heritage and options. There are many faiths and denominations in our area, in many languages and targeted even to age, gender or nationality. Since spirituality is so diverse and personal, if you need help connecting with a local faith group please contact me personally at [email protected] and I will do my best to help you find a resource.
- This is the need to be touched, kissed, hugged in a way that is pleasurable. This is the need for physical gentleness and tenderness. This is the need for a mutually fulfilling sex life. This is the need for a spouse that you find physical attractive.
- There are several Portland Sex Therapists to help couples re-spark intimacy and/or sexuality. Here are the recommendations from Psychology Today for Sex Therapy Therapists in Portland. For another option, I would recommend Temple Tantra to unlock sexual energy and become a better lover (or in the privacy of your own home you can visit White Lotus/Tantric Massage).
©2010 Cindy J. Taylor. You may repost with copyright notice and link back to this original article!
Please feel free to share this article or subscribe to the Portland Infidelity Examiner Channel by clicking on the buttons at the top of this column!
Cindy writes and blogs about infidelity and affair-free marriages on her website Affaircare.com. You can connect with her via email: [email protected] | on Twitter | or Facebook |