Wednesday, August 22, 2012

"Hope Springs" Offers Hope For All Couples!

Last week, my husband and I saw an entertaining movie - "Hope Springs".  Before the movie started and as the people were pouring in, I noticed that the auditorium was filled with silver-haired bobs and shiny bald scalps.  Yes, the average age was probably mid to late seventies.  Soon, the lights dimmed, the music started, and the Seniors began soaking up the wonderful acting performances of Tommy Lee Jones and Meryl Streep. What surprised me is that this movie has a strong message, not just for the those in their Golden Years, but for every couple!

Throughout the movie, there were bursts of laughter and yet there were moments when I saw several audience members take out a Kleenex and catch a tear or two. There were uneasy scenes when couples in the audience pulled apart from one another (just as the characters did in the movie) and there were times when partners snuggled closer together, again mirroring the emotion displayed on the screen. As the movie continued, the  messages of a marriage gone stale, of a wife feeling alone and lonely, of a husband content with routine and sports slowly eked out as they main characters seek help from a therapist. But the one message that rang out loud and clear and the one I hope everyone got is that all couples, even those who are younger or not married very long, often fall into the trap of not seeing one another!

Yes, they no longer see one another!  I understand - life does become routine, there are children to care for and to run and here and there, jobs are demanding, and the responsibilities of day to day living are overwhelming, especially during these difficult economic times! And then, technology (with all its wonders) has disconnected us even more as we spend less face to face time together.  However, there is hope!  Here are some easy wellness tips for couples to implement, now!

  • Once a week, put the kids to bed early, turn off all technology, and sit face to face for one hour. Talk to each other.  Listen to each other.  Hold each other. Really look at each other.  Tell one another what you love, respect, and appreciate about each other. 
  • Once a week, set aside a "date night."  I know you've all heard this before.  Don't poo poo this! The first week, one partner plans it.  Then next week, the other partner plans it. Here's the kicker- plan a date night that you know your partner will love!  Make it about him or her -not you!
  • During the week days, leave little love notes for one another, make an unexpected call or visit to each other's place of work just to say "hi" or to give a hug, plan a lunch together, or do a chore or job for your partner without being asked!   
Start with these three tips.  If we really see each other, we will want to please other. And, hope will spring eternal!


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