My Spouse is a Stranger: Adjusting to the Empty Nest

By Debbie L. Cherry, Ph.D.
Author of Child-proofing Your Marriage

Jan sipped her coffee as she looked across the breakfast table at her husband. John was reading the newspaper like he’d done every morning for the past 28 years…nothing different…and yet Jan felt like everything was different. So many things had changed.

Their youngest child had left for college last fall, and she still hadn’t seemed to be able to fill that hole that he left in her heart as he waved good-bye. She remembered when the children were young and she and John would dream about what life would be like when it was just the two of them again. But none of those dreams seemed to be coming true. As a matter of fact Jan wasn’t even sure if John wanted to do any of those things with her anymore. They hardly ever talked and they seemed to spend as little time together as possible. Jan couldn’t help but feel like she was married to a stranger.

Jan is not alone in her thoughts. It seems that more and more couples are beginning to realize how far they have grown apart through the years. And unfortunately this seems to be resulting in some sad statistics that indicate that divorce rates are on the rise for couples who have been married thirty or more years.1 Read More…

Submission: Insights from a Strong-Willed Wife

Debbie L. Cherry, Ph.D
Author, The Strong-Willed Wife
“My husband is just not the leader type. It takes him forever to make a decision. If he won’t lead then I guess I have to.”
“I know my husband can lead because he’s great at it at work. But at home he just lets me do it all.”
“I wouldn’t mind letting my husband lead our family…as long as he does it the way I would.”
Have you ever found yourself making comments like those? If so, it’s very likely that you are a strong-willed wife. There are some amazingly wonderful things about being blessed with a strong-willed personality. And as long as those traits are controlled by the Holy Spirit we strong-willed wives can bring changes to the world around us and do amazing things for the kingdom of heaven. But those same traits can cause some serious difficulties as we are trying to have a marriage that follows God’s ordained authority structure in our marriages. As strong-willed women, we struggle to let go of control and really allow our husbands to take their God given role in our homes. But it is something that we really have to learn to do if we want a marriage that God continues to bless. Read More…

Marriage Under Pressure

Two weeks ago, Tom was laid off. He and his wife, Renee, trust that God is in control and has another job for him. So why do they keep snapping at each other?
John and Mary lost their four-month-old girl to SIDS. They are extremely sad, but instead of crying together, they fight constantly. Worse yet, when they’re not fighting, they avoid each other.
Cherie and Brad have always kept a tight handle on their budget just to pay their bills. But as the prices for gas and food have skyrocketed, they can’t keep up. They feel helpless and have found themselves taking it out on each other.
Regardless of the type of crisis that might be affecting your marriage, you can be assured that it will be accompanied by stress. And as the physical, emotional and financial strain increases, so does the likelihood of conflicts between you and your spouse.
Here are five things you can do to protect your marriage and resolve the inevitable conflicts that come during a crisis: Read More…

Burnout and Depression on Clergy: A research paper

Burnout and depression among clergy is a common occurrence across denominations. This paper presents clergy as candidates for burnout, causes, stressors, emotional exhaustion, and treatment of burnout and depression in clergy. The clergy member’s reticence to reveal personal depression including suggestions for future research is also discussed. Read More…

Rethinking Traditional Marriage Roles

By: Debbie L. Cherry, Ph.D.

Maggie and Max are anything but your traditional couple. They have role reversal issues in just about every area of their life. Maggie is quiet, introspective and analytical in her personality while Max is much more outgoing, emotional and social. Maggie has served in the US Navy and is now a captain on the local police department.  She enjoys carrying a gun and is an expert marksman.  She is mechanically inclined and can usually be found in her garage tinkering with her stock car or her Harley. Max, on the other hand, has no interest in any of those things. He actually enjoys cleaning and has turned that talent into a successful professional janitorial service. His free time is filled with reading, Bible study, and gardening. He loves to cook and invite their friends over for dinner and an evening of games and conversation.

In the three years they have been married; their nontraditional roles are evident both around the house and in the way they relate to each other. Read More…

You’ve Prepared for the Wedding … but What About the Marriage?

You and your fiancé have worked hard to get all the preparations for your wedding just right. You have picked the perfect dress, rings, and cake.  You have invested in a photographer, coordinator and of course the perfect honeymoon. But what preparations have you made for your marriage? Did you considered adding pre-marital counseling into your plans? Or do you just keep saying to yourselves, “There’s just no way!  Our schedules are already so busy. Where in the world would we find time for pre-marital counseling between making all the reservations and addressing invitations? Besides, we have talked things through and know we are made for each other. Who needs counseling? It’s not really all that important is it?” Read More…

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