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They believe these topics are “crucial to a joyful relationship.” The date topics were things Mike and I had briefly discussed before: Trust and commitment; conflict and the way we fight; intimacy and sex; work and money; our relationships with our families; what fun and adventure mean to us; religion and spirituality; and our hopes and dreams.
With that experience, I’ve learned the importance of open and honest communication, which I truly believe has kept my relationship strong.We asked each other questions about our sex life and at the end of the questions, we had to “affirm our future together,” as the Gottmans call it.In the book, each of the eight dates concludes with a small, pre-written paragraph that sums up the goals of the chapter and how the couple can commit to being better together.But to my surprise, Mike kept offering to answer questions first like “How are the ways we manage conflict similar and different?” I found his answers extremely insightful and they helped me look at our relationship more in terms of our personal histories (like how our parents’ fighting styles may have affected us).If I’m being honest, we ignored the Gottman’s date three location suggestion – naked in bed – and instead lounged on the couch.
Nonetheless, I thought the date went really well, and Mike and I ended the conversation feeling on the same page.So when a copy of “Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime of Love,” crossed my desk, I was immediately interested.The authors, psychologists John Gottman and Julie Schwartz Gottman, have researched relationships for over 40 years and created “Eight Dates” to help couples navigate difficult conversations with eight seemingly simple dates.” and “Can you tell me about a time you didn’t trust me and how I could have resolved that situation?” When I saw the topic for date two was “addressing conflict,” I instantly assumed I’d be more open, since Mike tries to avoid conflicts of any kind at all costs.We walked around at the same park where we had our first date.