Sunday, May 11, 2014


‘It can all be very nice or very horrible… Why?’
ROMANCE/'FALLING IN LOVE': 'A genetic trick to hook us into marriage'? SEXUAL ABUSE


Billy Graham's most memorable statement???

(From his much-preached message on The Home):

Pardon the CAPS:




We do ourselves a big favour by loving our spouse/partner
The most important modeling we do for our children is to love their parent/our partner
Marriage is hard work (see ) and doesn’t become more fulfilling by accident or through the passing of time alone.
The basic idea of this inventory is that each of us goes away to a quiet place, and spends at least 24 hours thinking about the issues. These cover the basics, but there may be more…
Some of headings deliberately overlap: as in all surveys, that helps us cover the most important ‘bases’
Then, go away for a long evening meal together, or a weekend, and listen carefully to each other’s responses…
All the best: I’m cheering for you!
1. When we first met, and early in our romance, I was especially attracted by your….
2. Over the years, the qualities I have most appreciated in you are….
3. I love it when you….
4. The happiest time/s in our marriage have been….
5. The hardest times in our marriage for me have been….
6. Some of the ‘triggers’ which have made those times difficult have included….
7. In our communication, let’s work on…. When we argue I feel that…
8. Our financial arrangements are O.K. in these areas…. but we may need to work on ….
9. Our sexual life is OK when…. but let’s work a bit harder on….
10. In terms of parenting, I reckon when we look back we’ll be grateful for…. but will also be sorry about….
11. When we make decisions I feel OK about…. But I’d be happier if ….
12. Each partner needs some freedom to pursue their own recreation/interests/friends/personal and professional development… Are the time/s and contexts for these OK for each of us? I feel that couple-time, individual time and family time can be better balanced if…
13. What kind of marriage enrichment-time should we budget for? What should we do together?
14. My goal and hope for the next year, and the next five years for us is… To build a foundation for this we need to…
15. I believe that in our relationship we have the following strengths to build upon…
(Extra material: see )
(Thanks to my good friends Bill van Schie and John Mallison for some helpful suggestions)
Rowland Croucher


(Jottings TMA, May 2014, p. 25. Dr Barry Rogers' review of Monique Lisbon, Fragments of Home: Piecing Life together after childhood sexual abuse, Acorn, 2014).

One in six males have been abused in childhood or in adolescence: Richard B Gartner's work, Abused as Boys, and online support materials for men such (Jim Hopper). Trainers and facilitators will also find helpful (if disturbing) program insights in Andeds Nyman's and Borge Svensson's book, Boys: Sexual abuse and treatment (Jessica Kingsley 1997).

Resources: Dan Siegel - focus in therapy on Interpersonal neurobiology (IPNB) and mindfulness. Child psychiatrist Bruce Perry (eg. The Boy who was raised as a Dog, and other stories from a Child Psychiatrist's notebook - What Traumatised Children Can Teach Us About Loss, Love, and Healing. Australian therapists Kate Ollier's and Angela Hobday's helpful range of activities (over 100) in Creative Therapy: Adolescents Overcoming Child Sexual Abuse (2004) - group work.

Group facilitators via Victorian CASA / Centre Against Sexual Assault. Its website includes a good range of accessible, brief resources. More recent work on post-traumatic growth by Professor Stephen Joseph on strength-based therapy approaches of Positive Psychology: Joseph's very readable book, What doesn't kill us: The new psychology of post-traumatic growth. Grief Counselor and trainer Mary Beth Werdel's book with Robert Wisk: Primer on post-traumatic growth.

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