Updates from Coalition for Divorce Reform

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Divorce Reform <updates@divorcereform.info>
Date: Thu, Dec 15, 2011 at 2:20 PM
Subject: Updates from Coalition for Divorce Reform
To: Bill <billcoffin68@gmail.com>

Dear Bill,

Does America’s greatness lie in our economic wealth or in our values? How can we help reduce teen pregnancy and help teens succeed in current or future relationships? Should states enact waiting periods before couples can file for divorce? How does divorce impact women financially?

Please read the following posts to get the answers to these telling questions.

The Coalition for Divorce Reform needs you to spread the word about the devastating impact divorce has on children as well as their parents.

You can help by posting one or more of these blogs on your Facebook site, forwarding this newsletter to your friends, and going to the www.divorcereform.info site to register.

Thanks very much for your help.

Chris Gersten, Chair

Beverly Willett, Vice Chair
Coalition for Divorce Reform

Beginning at Home

Written by  Jason Williams

America’s greatness does not lie in its economic prosperity; it goes deeper than that. America’s value is in its values—specifically, its family values. And when marriage becomes passé due to a no-fault divorce culture that passes the legacy of disposable relationships to its children, no amount of money can repair the damage. 

Divorce indeed leaves a destructive legacy. Parental divorce leads to an increased risk of suicide and higher rates of psychological distress and mental illness; in fact, parental divorce has been shown to be more devastating to a child than parental death. And when divorce goes viral……. in a phenomenon called the “Divorce Cycle,” children of divorce are far more likely to have a marriage end in divorce.

Statistically, parental divorce increases a child's risk of school failure while decreasing the likelihood of college graduation and achievement of a high-status job. The end result is that children of divorce, even into adulthood, are at the highest risk of being impoverished. MORE at www.divorcereform.info

Help Teens Learn To Build Relationships

Written by  MIKE McMANUS

Although teen birth rates have fallen by a third over a decade, one in three U.S. teenage girls still get pregnant.  And teenagers account for half of all first out-of-wedlock births. Few of those girls will ever marry, and only 30 percent of those who do are in their first marriage by age 40. Their children are the least likely to fare well in school or relationships. Even worse, teens are apt to have a second unwed birth soon after the first.

In fact, 60 percent of girls aged 15 -17 approve of unwed childbearing, and three-quarters of those who are 18 or 19!

For decades the debate on teen sexuality has been between contraception vs. abstinence. "But neither approach devotes sufficient attention to instructing teens in how to achieve success in their current or future relationships or to exploring how postponing sex might contribute to healthy relationships down the road.” MORE at www.divorcereform.info

The Beauty of the Pause


I was surprised when I first learned that nearly 75% of states have no waiting period whatsoever before parties can file for divorce in spite of evidence suggesting that short or non-existent waiting periods may correspond to higher divorce rates. Marry one day, divorce the next. For the minority of states that have waiting periods, these interludes are intended to give couples time to make sure they've carefully considered the decision to end their marriage before starting litigation. Makes sense to me. MORE at www.divorcereform.info

Divorce Amidst Recession Impacts Women Especially Hard

Written by  LORI LOWE

Years ago, a divorcing friend told me she believed her financial situation would improve after her divorce due to the amount of child support and alimony she expected. Unsurprisingly, her financial situation greatly worsened after she filed for divorce. Within the year, she was filing for bankruptcy while caring for two children, and arguing with her ex about everything from the cost of school clothes to dental bills. MORE at www.divorcereform.info

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Subjects Needed / Hall Pass / Gottman Twitter /InScentives / Demographics and the Economy/ Grants - 12/14/11

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Smartmarriages" <smartmarriages@lists101.his.com>
Date: Dec 14, 2011 11:40 AM
Subject: Subjects Needed / Hall Pass / Gottman Twitter /InScentives / Demographics and the Economy/ Grants - 12/14/11
To: "List" <smartmarriages@lists101.his.com>, "Blogs" <cmfce@smartmarriages.com>



A graduate student at U of Nebraska is conducting research for her dissertation on communication and divorce outcomes. She is seeking individuals who are, or have been, legally divorced (not currently in process) to complete a 20-minute online survey.  You will be asked about interactions during your divorce with your ex-spouse, a family member of your choosing, and a friend of your choosing (you can, but don’t have to be close with any of them). You can remain totally anonymous, or choose enter a drawing for a $15 Visa gift card, and/or to receive the summary results of the study. To access the survey, or to learn more about it, visit https://ssp.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_cHk23dMx8klEt1y
If you can possibly help her, please take time to complete the survey and please, also forward to anyone who might be able to participate.   - diane

If you have questions contact:  
Sarah Wilder, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, sedirks@huskers.unl.edu
This one is raunchy – a buddy movie with jokes pitched to 4th-grade-boys level – but none the less, it packs a strong marriage/anti-infidelity message. And, what’s best is it speaks to men.  I suggest you check it out (it’s on Netflix which is the only way I see movies, these days).  See if you think you might add it to the recommended to your readers and add it to your Recommended Marriage Movies list. It’s by the Farrelly brothers (Something About Marry; Shallow Hal; etc) and has an R rating. Wishing you and your family a happy holiday.
I’ll try to fit in time to watch it.  Would it be OK for a bunch of teenage grandkids?  
Any comments or suggestions from the rest of you?  If you want to send a movie, it helps if you include a description/recommendation about the Marriage angle.  Here’s the Marriage Movie list: http://tinyurl.com/y9jsp4a
A good and hopeful sign – Gottman is on twitter and iTunes!

John and Julie Gottman now have a twitter account – subscribe: at GottSex
Check iTunes for Gottman Lessons like this one with a $1.99 downloadable app of 102 Sex Questions to Ask Women
(I can’t resist. When I read this headline –Filled Diaper Bags– I had to assume they meant inScentives. And, knowing the Ozarks team, I assume they were punning away and if you can’t laugh you’ll cry.  Because, all joking aside, they’re dealing with one of the most frustrating of conundrums: Marriage Education is such a good thing, but the challenge is how to get couples to take the classes – even when they’re free!  It definitely takes the right inScentive to lead the horses to water and to get them to stay and drink.  Great, creative work!  - diane)

Filled Diaper Bags Incent Expecting Couples to Attend and Complete a Relationship Workshop for Ozarks Marriage Matters

The Challenge: Persuade Disadvantaged Couples to Attend a Lengthy Educational Event
The right promotion can do more than incent event participation; it can also incent event completion. The team at Ozarks Marriage Matters, a non-profit strengthening marriages and reducing the divorce rate in the Ozarks, incented participation for its eight-hour, grant-funded “Hitched (or not) and Hatching” program that equips expecting couples—married or not—with relationship tools. The program was sponsored by the Forest Institute’s Operation Us and the Junior League of Springfield, whose volunteer members also helped run the classes.
The Solution: Give Gender-Neutral Diaper Bags Filled to the Brim with Baby Products
The grant required that couples receive at least eight hours of education, not an easy task when the demographic is economically challenged and has historically had negative schooling experiences. Mindful of their audience, the Ozarks team incented couples to come—and stay—by giving gender-neutral diaper bags overflowing with baby products. The idea was to emblazon pre-class promotional materials with pictures of fully-stocked bags to incent couples to come, but to give the bags at the end of the session to incent them to stay.
The Result: Diaper Bags Fill Workshop to Capacity and Reward Couples for Staying
The Ozarks team reports success, both for their grant-funded organization and for the people of the Ozarks. Pre-promoting the bags filled the workshop to capacity and enticed couples to stay as, during class, they accumulated stickers to exchange for the bags at the end of the day—only couples with full sticker sets were eligible. The team is pleased that the bags overcame participation reluctance and rewarded attending couples, who left feeling good about what they had accomplished for themselves and their children.

It’s hard to have a recovery when the Boomers have aged out of the procreation and purchasing cycle.  
This report The Sustainable Demographic Dividend: What Do Marriage & Fertility Have To Do With the Economy? but bears reading.  It details how many of the world's leading economies will soon face major demographic challenges.

. . .In much of the developed world, including almost all of East Asia and Europe, social welfare programs are straining to support surging dependent elderly populations, while productive working-age populations stagnate or shrink because fertility rates have fallen well below the replacement rate of 2.1 children per woman – the level needed to sustain the population over time.
And, this from today’s Washington Post (12/14/11) confirms the decline.  

. . . A Pew survey last year determined that more than four in 10 Americans younger than 30 consider marriage passe. . . . The slide has worsened with the economy.

. . . -In the 1950s, if you weren’t married, people thought you were mentally ill,- said Andrew Cherlin, a Johns Hopkins University sociologist who studies families. -Marriage was mandatory. Now it’s culturally optional.-


- Diane, In regards to the Marriage/Fatherhood Grants, Washington State got only one grant and it was to a MARRIAGE group TO DO FATHERHOOD work?!?  There used to be 20 small or medium grants for marriage strengthening from various funding sources in HHS . Now that the administration has combined all the smaller pockets, and then gave half to fatherhood, the marriage education effort has taken a big hit across the country. Washington state took a very big hit. Lots of work to do.
- Diane, Regarding the grants, you might refer people to Bill Coffin’s Blog site.  He’s now employed by NARME and has moved his Blog there. Expect he’ll cover the grants awards in depth.  It looks like the NARME folks all were funded.    Here’s the link: http://scoop.it/t/narme

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CALL FOR PRESENTERS NARME Champions for Children Conference 2012 Coffin .... Olsons add significant gifts to family studies endowment | narme | Scoopit ...


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Is Relationship and Marriage Education. Relevant and Appropriate to Child Welfare?

Healthy Relationship and Marriage Education:
Is Relationship and Marriage Education. Relevant and Appropriate to Child Welfare? NCFR 2011. David G. Schramm. Assistant Professor, Dept. of Human Dev. ...


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Wedding Marathon 2011: Thank You, National Media Coverage

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Carolyn Rich Curtis <info@skills4us.org>
Date: Mon, Dec 12, 2011 at 11:53 AM
Subject: Wedding Marathon 2011: Thank You, National Media Coverage
To: billcoffin68@gmail.com

New York Times Article
The Relationship Skills Center's first annual Wedding Marathon was featured in an article in Sunday's paper: Long Roads That Led, Finally, to the Altar.
Wedding Photos
Each couple had the donated services of professional photographers.  To see their beautiful work:  Photo Philanthropists.
Our Deepest Gratitude


We thank the many people who made the Wedding Marathon possible:

Tracie Stafford

Bryan Stafford 

Michele West

Pastor Paul Thompson

Ruth Anderson

Joann Richardson

Elfrena Foord

Donald and Krysten Curtis

Robert and Chris Deering

William and Susan Cordonnier

Ann Lucas

David Ljung

James Carroll

Millie Nishita of Flora Fresh

Kerri Costarella of Aba Daba Rents

Janice Stone Thomas

Chandra Domich

Cheryl Thornberry of Christ Community Church of Carmichael

Barbara & Claudia of CakeCastle

Sergio Barrios of Fluid Espresso Bar

Matt Florian of Scott-Naake Paper Company

Kim Chan of ArdenPlaza Cleaners

Reza Kamalian of Pizza Guys

Colors Salon

Mark Hardin of A Big Ticket Sound Experience

Renee Reibel of The Professional Florist

Shari Wise of Events by Wise

Terrance Stokes of Dynomite Music and DJ Services

Maurice Burnett and Carnet Burnett of Bia Salon

Ginger Wong of Transformations Makeup Institute

David Lohse of RioMar Photography

Kimyetta Barron of Kimyetta Barron Photography

Sai Saelee of Saelee Photography

Cyrette Beauchemin Smith of Cyrette Photography

Lisa Riddle Simpson of Digital Wonderland Photography

Leslie Trau of Leslie Trau Photography

Geraldine Lactaoen of Lactaoen Photography

Lacaoen O'Connor of Jennie O'Connor Photography

Tony Lopez of CBS Sacramento

Jennifer Garza of the Sacramento Bee

Louise Rafkin of the New York Times

Dan Roth of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Garry Cox of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Jenifer Cox of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Renee Schuner of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Connie Brown of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Robyn Cox of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Cynthia Bextine of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Violet Pyles of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Joyce Ruthrauff of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Jim Dempsey of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Alice Lee of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Paul Lee of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Peter Hill of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Katie Morris of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Tricia Morris of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Jeanne Rose of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Maureen McMahon of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Susan Hyman of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Brittany Dean of Westminster Presbyterian Church

Marc Brady

Roxana Quintero

Tyler Brown

Joseph Speaker

Dick Wylie

Gail Cullerton

Pamela Anderson

Delisa Verdun

Tonya Copeland

Lester Peterson

Kay Corral

Fred Chavez


We could not have done it without you! 

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Relationship Skills Center
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Sacramento, California 95827
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CALL FOR PRESENTERS - NARME Champions for Children Conference 2012

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: NARME <richard@narme.org>
Date: Mon, Dec 12, 2011 at 9:26 AM
Subject: CALL FOR PRESENTERS - NARME Champions for Children Conference 2012
To: billcoffin68@gmail.com

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NARME’s 2012 “Champions for Children” Conference
Baltimore, Maryland
July 20-25, 2012

Presenters Wanted!
The National Association for Relationship and Marriage Education (NARME) is currently seeking qualified, professional speakers – experts in their field - to present at the 2nd annual conference.  This conference will offer an array of topics around the goal of promoting “Champions for Children."  In preparing for a successful event, we realize that our sessions are only as effective as our presenters.
Staying in line with the mission of NARME, it is our desire to establish a conference that will foster education for healthy marriages, responsible fathers, and strong families.  We are seeking presenters and speakers that will join us in this endeavor to deliver quality sessions as well as enhance the overall conference experience.  As we begin to select speakers for this upcoming conference, we hope that this will become a lifelong partnership as we team up to become “Champions for Children”. 

All seminars should tie into the theme of the conference.  Presenters are expected to provide insightful information that will enhance the abilities of organizations, practitioners, and/or individuals to provide services to couples, fathers, families, and youth and single adults from diverse backgrounds for the benefit of raising healthy children, thus “Champions for Children.”  We are looking for presenters to provide information on effective programs for marriages, fatherhood and families, children and youth, best practices, tools and resources, and research.    
One, two, or three day training programs will start as follows: 3-day trainings begin on Friday, July 20th and run 3 days, 2-day trainings begin on Saturday, July 21st and run 2 days, 1-day trainings will be on Sunday, July 22nd.
Each workshop session will be approximately 90 minutes in length and should be able to provide hands-on tools for the participants.  It is highly recommended that the session be interactive.  Workshops will be scheduled on any of the dates between Monday, July 23rd – Wednesday, July 25th, 2012.  PRESENTERS SHOULD PLAN ON BEING AT THE
If you are interested in presenting, please visit www.NARMEConference.com to complete
a Presenter Application.  Submit one proposal for each workshop that you
desire to present.  Proposals must be received no later than 5:00 pm on Monday, January 9th, 2012.  Do not submit any physical paperwork or payment until notified to do so. 

Before submitting an application, please read the Presenter Agreement ( found on page 8
of the application
).  Proposal
selections will be made by Friday, January 13th, 2012, and presenters will be notified via e-mail.  The presenters that are selected will be given right of first refusal for an exhibit booth.        
Thank you in advance for your consideration.  We hope to see you at NARME’s “Champions for Children” 2012 Conference in Baltimore!
Best Regards,
Maggie Russell & Rob Harrison
NARME 2012 Conference Co-Chairs
Strengthening Marriages and Families

P.O. Box 14946 | Tallahassee, FL 32317 US

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Pre-Existing Conditions in a Marriage

Pre-Existing Conditions in a Marriage
We didn't even know about marriage education. I've since learned that it also has a great track record of helping couples with marital problems. Right now my ...


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