“Wonderful Wednesdays” Marriage Enrichment Resources
How would you like to sample what marriage enrichment is all about without spending a weekend at an event or committing to a series of classes? Eddie B. Robertson, Ph.D, and Sylvia Robertson, M.S.W., have created a delightful and effective resource, Wonderful Wednesdays: Fifty-Two Conversations for Couples,* which offers brief (usually one page or less) reflections on common marriage issues and a few question prompts to start you thinking and talking to each other. The authors encourage couples to schedule weekly conversations using this material, which – over time – teaches communication skills while focusing on the joys and challenges of building a healthy, happy, and enduring relationship.
Among the topics readers are invited to consider are the following:
- How do you protect your relationship from the daily demands that drain and distract you?
- How do you intentionally keep the fire of romance burning?
- What signals do you use to communicate your love?
- What can you do to increase the comfort level of your marriage?
- How do you effectively ask for what you need?
- How do you repair your relationship when you have caused hurt or disappointment?
Eddie and Sylvia were just names on the Better Marriages Leader Couples list until February 2012, when we went to Georgia to co-lead an event with them. We felt an immediate connection and were touched by their authenticity and down-to-earth kindness and hospitality. Active lay persons in their local United Methodist Church and deeply committed to each other and their children and to Better Marriages (formerly the Association for Couples in Marriage Enrichment), they shared many experiences and interests similar to ours. Most of all, we explored the joys and challenges of intentionally living out the Better Marriages slogan: “Working for better marriages, beginning with our own.” Our friendship deepened when they came to Maine the following year to co-lead an event for our New England Conference.
Active in Better Marriages since 1974, about the same time that we began to get involved, they are now specialists in Marriage Enrichment, a Leader Couple, and Trainers and Advanced Trainers of Leader Couples. They are also certified in the use of Prepare-Enrich and Couple Communication. Now that they are retired from the faculty of Reinhardt University in Waleska, Georgia (Eddie as professor of biology and Sylvia as director of the Academic Support Office), they continue to lead and host workshops and write more regularly for their blog at www.eddieandsylviarobertson.com. They enjoy their home in Waleska, Georgia, where Eddie tends and harvests a prolific garden, complete with greenhouse. They continue to serve in and through their local church and share in the lives of their children and grandchildren.
They are such real people, overflowing with faith and love and kindness. We were delighted when they gave us a copy of their book, Wonderful Wednesdays, written as a way to introduce couples to the concepts and practices of marriage enrichment. You can get to know them and learn and grow through their sharing on Facebook (Eddie and Sylvia Robertson Marriage Enrichment) or at their website, where you will find a blog, couple exercises, a powerful story about Sylvia’s parents, information about the local church Marriage Enrichment Group they lead, and about “Virtual Marriage Enrichment Groups.” The Virtual MEGs provide an opportunity to participate by phone or webcast the first Tuesday of each month at 8:00 p.m., Eastern Time or on the third Wednesday at 7:00 p.m, Mountain Time. Visit their website for access information. Walk with them as they deal with health and job and family crises; learn to adjust their attitudes as needed; and brighten daily life with gifts of love for each other.
I am grateful to Eddie and Sylvia for the many ways they make marriage enrichment more readily accessible, because I believe that people who experience its insights and benefits will seek more opportunities to participate and grow. Getting to know Eddie and Sylvia through their book and website is a wonderful way to start – or expand – your marriage enrichment journey.
*Wonderful Wednesdays: Fifty-two Conversations for Couples by Eddie and Sylvia Robertson (Canton, GA: Yawn’s Publishing, 2012). Available in paperback through www.yawnspublishing.com and through online booksellers in paperback and e-book versions.
Jane P. Ives, United Methodist Marriage and Family Ministries Consultant
10 Quaker Lane, Portland, ME 04103, 207-797-8930, [email protected]