R is for Repair


Zach Brittle

Repair is easily my favorite concept in the entire Gottman encyclopedia. Typically, we think of repair in terms of what we have to do to a car or a washing machine or a botched haircut. As in, it’s broken, it needs repair. But in relational terms, repair is less about fixing what is broken and more about getting back on track.

What is a repair attempt?

Masters of relationships repair early and often. And they have lots of strategies for how to repair. Gottman describes a repair attempt as “any statement or action — silly or otherwise — that prevents negativity from escalating out of control.” The reason I love the concept so much is because of that word “any.” It leaves a ton of room for creativity. And because every relationship is different, finding the repair strategies that work for you can actually be a unique game that belongs to just the two of you.

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The Real Cost of Divorce



Marriage can be difficult. Sometimes you may feel like you’re at your wits end and the relationship can’t be saved.

But are you aware of the real costs of getting divorce. It’s far beyond just money.

Check out the infographic we put together below about different stats related to divorce in Canada and the United States. If you’d like to share on your blog/website, copy the embed code near the bottom of this page.

You’ll notice from the stats and figures presented below that it’s important partners experiencing a rough patch – no matter how tough it may seem – at least try marriage and couples counselling. It can save a lot. And it’s highly effective.

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The Top 20 Reasons for Divorce that Most Couples Overlook

reasons for divorce


Elizabeth Arthur

Divorce doesn’t happen by accident. It builds up slowly when people overlook the things that matter most. Read the top reasons for divorce here.

Divorce isn’t a bubble that’s ready to burst.

Most people assume that a divorce is a shocker, something that comes right out of the blue when it is least expected.

Perhaps, to family and friends, that may be the case.

But to the couple involved, it’s something they would have seen all along.

Most of us make the grave error of taking the things that matter most for granted.

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Marriage and the Story of Alice in Wonderland

Image result for picture of alice in wonderland


As the story goes, Alice sees a very unusual rabbit go down a hole, and she jumps in with two feet. She has no idea what this journey is going to be and Wonderland isn’t really all that great of a place.

There are scary things, challenging things, and things that are also interesting and fascinating. It’s an adventure, and Alice doesn’t know what’s in store for her, but she jumps in anyway.

Alice doesn’t hesitate or think maybe a better rabbit will come along tomorrow.

She doesn’t look back and doesn’t question the adventure she’s chosen.

That’s commitment, and that exactly is the kind of spirit every couple should nurture in their marriage on a daily basis. Marriage will then be a blissful experience despite all the hiccups.

Manage Conflict


Karen Bridbord

The fifth level of the Sound Relationship Workplace is Manage Conflict. There is so much to be said about the process of conflict management amongst colleagues. In this article, I would like to focus on the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling. Identified by Dr. Gottman in his research with couples to predict divorce with over 90% accuracy, the Four Horsemen can be present in workplace relationships as well — very much undermining productivity if not actively managed. In essence, the Four Horsemen are detrimental to an office environment and work culture.

Think about a recent conflict that you had with a colleague. Did you address it directly? If so, what was the process by which it was discussed? Did you both feel heard and understood by the other? If not, did the conflict get ignored?  Did it fester? How did you speak about your differences? Was there any criticism, contempt, defensiveness, or stonewalling involved?

Dr. Gottman has utilized his research findings to differentiate the Masters of relationships from the Disasters. In particular, he found that the Disasters were different from the Masters in how they talked to one another during conflict. During a conflict discussion, the Masters had a ratio of 5:1 positive interactions to negative interactions, while the Disasters had a ratio of 0.8:1.

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4 Marriage Myths That Cause Divorce​​


Kyle Benson

As soon as the engagement ring is slipped on, we are inundated with messages about how our relationship should be. Our friends and family tell us what we should tolerate and what we shouldn’t. It’s “common knowledge” that marriage kills sex, right?


What you believe about your relationship determines the relationship you end up with, and some of these common beliefs can be toxic. They lead couples down the wrong path, or worse, convince them that their marriage is hopelessly going to go up in flames.

These myths ruin countless healthy relationships just because a couple believes there is something fundamentally wrong about it.

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When is it time to say “This relationship is over”?


Michele Gruenhage

Frequently people come into my office unsure about whether their relationship is worth saving or if it is beyond repair.  As couples tell me the story of their relationship I hear them describe the ways they each feel hurt, lonely, and discouraged.  Sometimes couples come in soon after they recognize they need support in communicating with each other in better ways. They haven’t had much conflict and they feel terrible about the things they recently said to each other in the heat of the moment.

More often, however, couples have been coping with their painful dynamics for years, and their level of discouragement is high, and their hope is low.  They have ingrained patterns of fighting – yelling, screaming, name-calling, and/or silence. The Four Horsemen are running rampant. They feel embarrassed and worried about how all of the fighting is affecting their kids.  Maybe there has been an emotional or sexual affair. Maybe one or both partners struggle with addiction – gambling, pornography, drugs, and/or alcohol.

I often ask clients “Why do you stay in this relationship?”  Or “What is your commitment to working on this relationship?”.  These are some of the answers I hear regularly:

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The Death of Love Isn’t Natural: The 7 Steps to Separation



Kyle Benson

“Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don’t know how to replenish its source, it dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds, it dies of weariness, of witherings, or tarnishings, but never a natural death.” – Anais Nin

Marriages rarely end overnight. They tend to unravel over time, in ways that are now fairly predictable thanks to research by Dr. John Gottman. In 1986 Dr. Gottman and his colleagues built a Love Lab to learn the secrets of lasting love and understand why love dies.

By studying couples for over 40 years, Dr. Gottman could predict with a 90% accuracy which marriage would fail, and which would succeed. These are the factors he found most often contribute to the dissolution of a marriage:

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5 Reasons why partners drift apart

what is love?


Mayowa Durojaye

Ever wondered why a relationship that was seemingly going smoothly then takes a bad turn?

The reasons why partners drift apart is no brain teaser at all as they differ in various relationships but there are some reasons that cut across most relationships. The drifting apart might take some time to unfold but what is important is to tackle the issues before it is too late.

Here are the five most common reasons couples drift apart and what you can do to avoid or, as the case may be, correct these issues in your own relationship.

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Why are you rushing to get married?

Have you given it enough thought before saying 'I do'?


Better single and slaying than married and miserable.

Ayoola Adetayo

I’ll be the first to categorically state that weddings are beautiful and marriages can be sweet.

Having documented so many weddings and having seen the intensity of the joy on couples’ faces at ceremonies, this much can not be denied.

To beautify a wedding is easy. All you need do is pay a good event planner and that’s settled.

To have a beautiful marriage is however a different thing entirely, and you definitely can’t pay anyone to sweeten your marital union.

No matter how long you have been in a relationship with someone, once the seal of marriage is stamped on that relationship, something changes.

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