“A true love story is not a fairy tale”

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“A true love story is not a fairy tale”

Eight Dates by John Gottman, et al, Workman Publishing Co., US $24.95, Pp 230, February 2019, ISBN 978-152350446

Dating may be complicated and difficult for many of us. Many of us have been dating for a long time — and with the same person – and may still feel awkward on a date. For some, it is difficult to start the conversation and, for others, to carry on the conversation. Dating is both and a and a skill you can learn. In Eight Dates, John Gottman and Julie Schwartz Gottman tell you how to strengthen and deepen your love by carrying out conversations on subjects such as money, sex, and trust. As marriage counselors, John Gottman and Julie Schwartz Gottman have helped countless couples to strengthen their bonds of love. The authors of Eight Dates argue that the success and failure of a marriage or long term relationship are no more certain than a coin toss. In the United States, more than half of all marriages end in divorce. In Portugal, the number is 70 percent.

They explain how you can make your marriage or long-term relationship. They explain how you should behave and carry on discussion during your first eight dates. You can start these eight dates either at the beginning of your relationship or many years after living together. After these eight dates, you will have many, many more. The authors of Eight Dates argue that marriages and long-term relations can be made happy and long-lasting. When you weave two lives together, it is inevitable that there are conflicts between the two from time to time. The words that pass between you and your partner, as well as the expressions and gestures that accompany these words, will define and determine your relationship. A true love story is not a fairy tale. It takes vulnerability and effort. The reward is that you love your partner more on your fiftieth anniversary than you did on your wedding night. You can stay in love forever. The authors say that successful long-term relationships are created through small words, small gestures, and small acts. A lifetime of love is created every single day you are together. Getting to know your partner does not end the minute you return the moving van and are sharing dresser-drawer space, or the minute you say, “I do.” It never ends

The authors write, “Your relationship is a great adventure. Treat it as such. Be curious. Be vulnerable. Be willing to venture outside your comfort zone. Learn to listen. Be brave enough to talk. Share your hopes, your fears, and your dreams.” They say they started and ended the book with trust. They write, “It is absolutely central to the success and failure of all relationships. Couples whose relationships are successful feel safe with each other. Trust is what allows you to be vulnerable. Increasing the degree of trust (friendship, showing up, keeping your word) improves your relationship. You don’t have to be similar in every way for your love to last; most couples are more dissimilar than similar. But you do have to be brave enough to be vulnerable. A lifetime of love is made up of the small moments and interactions you have with each other.”

The authors say that happy couples express positively in their relationships. Couples whose love lasts have a ratio of 5 to 1 positive to negative interactions during a fight or conflict. When they are just hanging out, they have a ratio of 20 to 1 positive to negative interactions. That means for every negative thing you say to each other, you have 20 positive things to say or do. They say the best way to cherish each other is to make your relationship a priority. Give it time, give it attention, and be intentional about the life you’re creating with each other. Go on these eight dates and then go on 800 more.

Finally, we have a truly revolutionary book for almost everybody. Eight Dates carries a much-needed message to all those who want true love and create a lasting bond with their partners. This will stimulate your mind and help you discover where your relationship has gone wrong. It will help you communicate better with your partner. It is an original contribution to the art of love. The authors have the spirits of scientists and the souls of romantics. Science and romance rarely mingle so easily in a book. Everybody will benefit from this astonishingly new research — even therapists.

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