Tag Archive: Marital Therapy


Laugh and Be Married!

Review:  Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage by Mark Gungor

After one of my dear friends proclaimed that this book, “Laugh Your Way  Better Marriage” had saved her marriage, I decided to check it out for myself.  After reading the first section, I actually found myself laughing out loud.  Mr. Gungor presents a very solid look at marriages: the myths, realities, and land mines that can occur.  Gungor begins with the supposition that there is no such thing as a “soul mate” and that relationships succeed by learning to live well with the person chosen to be one’s mate.  He presents the “Laws of Marriage Physics”, most of which have been well established in various books on male-female relationships (men and women are different and have different wants, needs, and communication styles), in such a way that is both insightful and entertaining.  I found myself in agreement with most of Mr. Gungor’s assessments and advice: “Marriage takes courage…discipline…endurance…forgiveness.”  I recommend this book for any couple in any stage of marriage.  While most of the information is not novel, it is refreshing to find a book that doesn’t encourage people to “follow their bliss” but rather teaches them how to work together and cultivate their relationship skills.

_225_350_Book.68.coverAll you need is love? Not according to Dr. Eggerich:  Love & Respect, based on Ephesians 5:33 and culminating from Dr. Eggerich’s vast experience in pastoral and marital counseling, focuses on the transformational power of unconditional love and unconditional respect in marriage. Although it is certainly not the most entertaining or captivating book, Dr. Eggerich does successfully capture one of the primary sources of conflict in a majority of marriages: unmet needs.  Dr. Eggerichs postulates that women have an innate need for love and that men have an innate need, not for love, but for respect.  He explains that the failure to have this essential need met results in a cycle of reacting and withholding the other from one’s spouse, dubbed the “Crazy Cycle”.  While this may seem an overly simplistic distillation, it does have merit.  In a highly unscientific poll, I queried my patients over the past week that were experiencing challenges in their marriage: 100% agreed, not only that “love & respect” were an issue, but also that the converse had the potential for restoration.  Dr. Eggerich presents his thesis in the first section, accompanied by many relevant and supportive Biblical quotations.  He follows in the subsequent sections with suggestions for creating an “Energizing Cycle” including specifics on how to express your love/respect in a way that the other spouse can receive; then concludes with the “Rewarded Cycle” and several appendices with practical exercises.  While Eggerich tends to be redundant in his writing style, his message is both valid and useful in application.  I recommend this book for couples that are experiencing difficulties in their relationship or those who want to take their relationship to a higher level through improved communication and greater understanding.