We chose a partner “’till death do us part,” but rarely do couples check on the status of their relationship unless they are in crisis.
Fortunately, this was not the case for Mark and Kim Houff. The high school sweethearts have been married for twenty-five years and are raising two teenaged daughters. Mark is also in the military, which puts extra pressure on the family. “As we’ve been dealing with teenagers, we find that we sometimes neglect our own spousal relationship,” they said. “We were interested in taking a few days off from our busy schedules to focus on a tune up for our relationship.”
During the Oxygen for Your Relationship seminar, the Houffs took the Couple Check-Up quiz and were surprised to discover that their relationship ranked strong almost across the board. “It really made us realize that our conflicts are typically over minor issues,” they said. “The minor issues, however, may be symptoms of unresolved conflict or poor communication.”
Since the seminar, Mark and Kim have utilized Oxygen resources, and already, they have noticed an improvement in their communication. “We are using the techniques and have been working on our conflict resolution,” they said. “We also downloaded the Oxygen app for smartphones and are using that as a tool. Although it’s only been a week since the seminar, we have noticed that our communication is much more fruitful.”
Small changes, like those made by the Houffs, can preserve and strengthen a marriage. Poor communication, when unchecked and multiplied by years or decades, can wear away a once thriving relationship. The Oxygen seminar helps couples get ahead of problem areas, so they don’t become cancerous to the marriage.
“The military places unusual stresses on any marriage – deployments and frequent moves that tend to prevent establishment of roots,” said the Houffs. “As a result the family unit (immediate family) becomes your main support structure throughout your life. Any improvement in communication skills makes that support structure stronger.”