by Ayize Ma’at
Since working with couples I’ve come across a lot of men that seriously question the purpose of marriage coaching, marriage counseling, and marriage education. I see the hesitation to engage so frequently that i’m not surprised when I encounter the reluctance and sometimes resistance to jump in head first. The general impression is that you are diving in shark infested waters where women and their issues are waiting to eat you alive. The fear of being ridiculed, ostracized, and even challenged, each make up a brick on the wall blocking your interest in participating. It’s real yall……however with that being said, I will unashamedly say that marriage counseling , marriage coaching, and marriage education has had an amazing impact on my relationship. My wife of yesterday is no longer my wife today…and i’m eternally grateful to the process of marriage enrichment.
A lot of men want to know how they will benefit from engaging in marriage enrichment activities. To answer that question I will provide you with 3 ways my relationship has changed as a result of constantly seeking to strengthen the bond between my wife and I.
1.)The quantity and quality of sex has improved.
I ain’t got to ask her a thousand and one times to “get some”. She actually initiates and gives it to me with her whole mind, body, and spirit. You ever get it so good you just gotta tell someone? Below is an email message I wrote to some couples back in February where I just had to share the “goodness” I got:
What’s up Everybody,
I hope yall had a wonderful weekend being intentional about connecting with that special someone. I just wanted to pause for a moment and give my wife a shout out for being remarkable and to say thank you, thank you, thank you. I’m doing this publicly because IT AIN’T DONE ENOUGH. Many of you on this email thread have heard me say that it’s married folks responsibility to make marriage attractive. We can do this by not being ashamed, embarassed, or dismissive about the “goodness” that we got. We gravitate to the applause in life….so stand up and clap for your spouse….I’m going to do that for mine. Last week my wife sent me an email invite to a romantic dinner in our home….scheduled for last night. There were rose petals in the shape of a heart on the dining room table. The 4 chairs that our children would normally sit in were faced outward and pushed away from the table which made the experience feel exclusive. I was pleasantly surprised when my wife walked from the kitchen and served me dinner in black laced lingerie. WOW!!!! She sat on one end of the table….I on the other. I couldn’t hold back the two tears that trickled down my cheek. I was overwhelmed with gratitude. We played valentine’s day checkers for about 20 minutes…pulled out the chocolate and stencils……..and then we……………………………………….. ?
I know someone else out there has a story. I know someone else has a reason to say thank you. I know someone else is itching to celebrate the “goodness” that they got. Celebrate black love….it’s “OUR” love.
P.S.. Some of yall might say this is TMI….but it’s the TMI that needs to happen more often.?
2)My wife nags me less.
Prior to really seriously working on our relationship I felt like Aiyana was a gnat hovering around my ears. I felt like a part of her purpose in life was to remind of what I wasn’t doing, where we need to go, what I need to do, and how I need to do it. Needless to say this was problematic. I was feeling like……I’m a Grown Ass Man and I’m quite capable of remembering what needs to be done and respect the fact that I have my own way of doing it. Well guess what yall….because we worked on us and improved the quality of our relationship….she don’t be all up in my ear the way she used to be. Both her tone and approach have changed (kinda sort of softened) when it comes to tackling heavy topics. Instead of being an irritant to my ears…..her words now soothe them.
3)My wife respects me more
By no means is Aiyana disrespectful to me. Aiyana is strong willed and that can occasionally complicate conversations when we are trying to get clear on roles and responsibilities in our home. Aiyana used to fight me tooth and nail on things that I felt were in my lane…..such as vehicle repair and maintenance and it used to get on my last nerves. On some occasions I actually wondered why is she arguing with me about this when she doesn’t know what the hell she is talking about? However, since taking and teaching marriage education classes Aiyana argues less and defers more. She actually yields to my understanding in certain areas. I’m thankful to her for that.
All in all I thought our relationship was pretty good prior to going through the marriage education process…I mean we are best friends so we’ve always had an extremely tight, passionate, and love-filled connection. However after making the conscious decision to immerse ourselves in improving what we thought was good so that it could become even “gooder” a whole new world opened up. The wife I had yesterday is no longer the wife I have today and I’m genuinely excited about walking towards eternity with my wife, my lover, and my friend…..Aiyana Kai Ma’at.
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