Courageous Update: Get A Courageous Head Start

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Sent: Thursday, August 25, 2011 10:44 AM
To: Bill Coffin
Subject: Courageous Update: Get A Courageous Head Start


August 25, 2011

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Red Carpet Event

Red Carpet Event

On Friday, you can participate in the special COURAGEOUS Red Carpet showing in Atlanta. From 6-7 p.m. EDT, you can watch the red carpet happenings live online as host Wayne Shepherd interviews cast members, Sherwood leaders, Mark Hall from Casting Crowns, and other guests at the event.

Just go to Friday, August 26 at 6 p.m. Eastern/3 p.m. Pacific to watch!


Get a Courageous Head Start

Get a Courageous Head Start

While many theaters are selling out their primetime Friday and Saturday evening showings on Opening Weekend, there are creative ways to get a large group to the movie. If you can sell 250 tickets, you can see the movie on Thursday, September 29—the night before it opens! Connect with Sony Group Sales if you are interested in a Thursday showing.

You can also work with Sony or your local theater to request a special Saturday morning show time. This would be ideal for a men's group outing or if you are providing tickets to law enforcement officers who might not be able to attend at another time.

» Purchase Tickets for Thursday Night
» Find a Theater


We Were Made to Be Courageous

We Were Made to Be Courageous

When you see the music video from Casting Crowns for their new song "Courageous," you get to see snippets of scenes from COURAGEOUS. The song is featured in the film as well.

"Courageous" is one of 12 songs on the band's new album, "Come To The Well," which arrives in stores October 18. Lead singer Mark Hall says, "When we come to Jesus, we come to our well." You can see Mark and the entire Casting Crowns band as they tour as the album releases.

» Watch the "Courageous" music video
» Pre-order the album
» Find the tour schedule at


Share Tools

Share Tools

We all like to share. And at, you can find all kinds of great share tools that allow you to let your friends know that COURAGEOUS is opening in theaters on September 30—from printable bookmarks, flyers, and posters, to electronic banners and profile images.



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Culture Watch: Marriage Keeps Love Alive and Hearts Pumping

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: The Heritage Foundation <>
Date: Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 12:51 PM
Subject: Culture Watch: Marriage Keeps Love Alive and Hearts Pumping
To: Bill Coffin <>

Culture Watch: Weekly Round-Up on Family, Religion and Civil Society

August 25, 2011

Culture Watch: Marriage Keeps Love Alive and Hearts Pumping

Many a bachelor has taunted and teased a groom-to-be that “I do” will be his famous last words. But for all the jesting predictions about the finality or fatality of marriage, walking down the aisle could be the healthiest thing you do to keep your relationship alive and your heart ticking.

A new study published in the Journal of Health Psychology suggests that when it comes to major heart surgery, marriage can be a good predictor of long-term survival. The study found that married men and women were 250 percent more likely to be alive 15 years after coronary artery bypass surgery than their unmarried counterparts. Marriage had an even greater impact on men’s post-op longevity. Fifteen years after bypass surgery, over 80 percent of happily married men’s hearts were still beating for the one they loved, while only 36 percent of single men were still living. Even among male patients who rated their marriages poorly, almost two-thirds survived past the 15-year mark.

Greater surgery survival rates aren’t the only benefit that comes with giving your heart away in matrimony. In addition to the usual prescriptions of regular exercise and a balanced diet, tying the knot could be one of the most beneficial lifestyle changes you make. Marriage can have a profoundly positive effect on men and women’s psychological well-being, stress levels, and drinking and smoking habits. Marriage is even associated with reduced mortality rates.

The benefits of marriage do not stop at the doctor’s office door. Married men and women also tend to have better financial health, increased savings, and greater social mobility than unmarried individuals. Perhaps most importantly, lifelong, married love can provide the best environment for raising well-adjusted, successful children.

With its many social, economic, and even health benefits, one need only place a finger on the state of marriage to read the pulse of civil society. Skyrocketing unwed birth rates, no-fault divorce laws, and increasing cohabitation have placed the health of families and society in peril. Fortunately, the same strength of heartstrings that can help pull men and women through surgery can also restore families and build stable, loving homes for the next generation.

Policymakers, especially, have an important role in prescribing remedies for society’s faltering view of marriage by promoting the many benefits of matrimony for love, life, and health. Tell us what you think at our blog >>

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Family Fact of the Week
Married Adults Tend to Report Better Health

Nearly nine in 10 married adults report being in good or very good health, a greater share than their non-married peers.

Click here for the full chart

More from Heritage

A Marshall Plan for Marriage: Rebuilding Our Shattered Homes 
Backgrounder by Chuck Donovan 

Cohabitation Compounds Divorce as a Threat to America’s Children
Blog Post by Collette Caprara

Kraft Foods’ Divorce Prize a Miraculously Bad Idea
Blog Post by Chuck Donovan

Black and Tired: Essays on Race, Politics, Culture, and International Development
Live via webcast, join The Heritage Foundation at 10AM as Dr. Anthony Bradley brings together ideas of moral theology and economics in a compelling presentation. 

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About The Heritage Foundation
Founded in 1973, The Heritage Foundation is a research and educational institute — a think tank — whose mission is to formulate and promote conservative public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense.

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Cohabitation: Largest Threat to Children

August 25, 2010

Column #1,565

Cohabitation: Largest Threat to Children

By Mike McManus


            The Institute for American Values issued a landmark report, “Why Marriage Matters, Third Edition” which states: “The rise of cohabitation is the largest unrecognized threat to the quality and stability of children’s family lives.


            “In fact, because of the growing prevalence of cohabitation, which has risen fourteen-fold since 1970, today’s children are much more likely to spend time in a cohabiting household than they are to see their parent’s divorce.”


            The report has some good news about divorce:  “Children who are now born to married couples are actually more likely to grow up with both of their parents than were children born at the height of the divorce revolution,” says the report written by W. Bradford Wilcox who directs the National Marriage Project for the University of Virginia.


While 27% of children experienced a parental divorce if they were born in the late 1970s, only 23% of those born 20 years later live through a divorce.  (However, that’s triple the 8% divorce rate of kids born in Britain or France, and shatters 1 million U.S. kids annually.)


What’s worse: 42% of American children will endure the horror of living in a cohabiting family, almost double the percentage hurt by divorce.  Kids in cohabiting households “are markedly more likely to be physically, sexually and emotionally abused than children in both intact, married families and single-parent families.”   Some snapshots:


·         Teenagers from cohabiting families are 60% less likely to graduate from high school than those with married parents.

·         Children in cohabiting families are five times more likely “to experience depression, difficulty sleeping, feelings of worthlessness, nervousness and tension.”

·         Preschool children are 47.6 times more likely to die in a cohabiting household compared to those with married parents.

·         Daughters raised outside of intact marriages are three times more likely to be young, unwed mothers.


As recently as the 1970s, the vast majority of adult Americans were living in an intact

marriage and almost nine in ten children were born into married families. “No longer. Now, less than half of adults are married.”


            “This retreat from marriage has hit poor, working-class and minority communities with particular force,” while marriage trends of college educated, affluent Americans have taken a turn for the better. Nonmarital child-bearing soared more than six fold from 5% in 1982 to 34% in 2006-8 among white high school educated Americans.  By contrast, unwed births of college educated remained only 2% during these years, and divorce rates fell.


The report found this growing marriage gap troubling. “It leaves working-class and poor adults more distanced from an institution that has historically lent purpose, meaning, responsibility, mutual aid and a sense of solidarity to the lives of countless men and women.” And it leaves poorer children “doubly disadvantaged” with less family resources and fewer  married parents.


Sociologist Paul Amato states: “increasing marital stability to the same level as in 1980 is associated with a decline of nearly 500,000 children suspended from school, about 200,000 fewer children engaging in delinquency or violence, 250,000 fewer children receiving therapy… 80,000 fewer children thinking about suicide and about 28,000 fewer children attempting suicide.”


The report offers no answers, only questions: “How can communities be mobilized to promote a marriage-friendly culture?”


I have an answer.  I’ve helped more than 10,000 pastors join across denominational lines to make marriage a high priority, by creating Community Marriage Policies in 229 cities.  A study by the Institute for Research and Evaluation reported that in the first 114 cities, divorce rates fell 17.5% in seven years, cohabitation dropped by a third compared to control cities. Now marriage rates are rising. 


The Institute estimated that 31,000 to 50,000 marriages were saved from divorce by 2001.  With another decade in the original cities, and 229 cities now, perhaps 100,000 divorces were averted.


Nearly a tenth of the cities cut divorce rates in half, such as Modesto, CA which signed the first Community Marriage Policy in 1986.  Its divorce rate has been nearly 50% lower for a decade. Marriages have doubled from 1,300 a year to 2,600. With more kids in stable homes, teen pregnancies fell 30% in ten years and school dropouts, by 19%.


Community Marriage Policies can “promote a marriage friendly culture.” 


More is needed.  Government inadvertently subsidizes cohabitation. A woman with an unwed birth gets welfare, Medicaid, food stamps, etc. as if she were bringing up the child alone.  But most are cohabiting, and have the benefit of his income plus taxpayer income.    If she marries him, she loses subsidies.


My solution: If they marry, let them keep the subsidies for two years, then taper off.  More will marry, the best answer for everyone, and government costs will drop in time.


Mike McManus is President of Marriage Savers and a syndicated columnist.




My new email address is

Michael J. McManus
syndicated columnist
"Ethics & Religion"
President & Co-Chair
Marriage Savers
9311 Harrington Dr.
Potomac, MD 20854



Time is Running Out! | FTF eNews August Vol.2

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: First Things First <>
Date: Wed, Aug 24, 2011 at 1:12 PM
Subject: Time is Running Out! | FTF eNews August Vol.2

First Things First eNews
  August 2011    Volume 2      

FTF Classes

Passionately Married*

 Learn how to bring "sexy" back to your marriage   


August 31 & September 7  


5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Burks UMC


6433 Hixson Pike
Hixson, TN  37343

Click here to register


Boot Camp
for New Dads



(Family University) 


* Funding for this project was provided by the US Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Grant: 90FE0031. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the US Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children
and Families.
Save The Dates!

September 30, 2011

October 11, 2011

December 3, 2011
Find us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter

The Nearly-Wed Adventure* 


Time is Running Out!         

The Nearly-Wed Adventure is this Saturday! There's still time to register for this exciting seminar for couples who are seriously dating or engaged. The Nearly-Wed Adventure takes place on Saturday, August 27 at the Vaudeville Café from 8:30am to 4:30pm. Participants should come dressed and ready for adventure as you and your mate tackle and overcome obstacles that many young couples face in their relationships. There will be interactive games and activities, a delicious lunch and great door prizes including passes for two for zip line rides, an Insane Paintball package for the guys, passage aboard the River Gorge Explorer and an Ocoee River rafting adventure! The cost is $30.00 per couple, and you must pre-register. 

Sign up online at or by calling 423.267.5383
Annual Fall Banquet


FTF Presents Dr. Gary Chapman          

Join FTF for our Annual Fall Banquet on Tuesday, September 20 at the Chattanooga Convention Center at 6:30 p.m.  This year's speaker is Dr. Gary Chapman, a world-renowned advocate for strong marriages and families. Dr Chapman is author of the award-winning book The Five Love Languages which has sold more than five million copies and has been translated into more than 36 languages.

This promises to be a truly inspirational evening and one you won't want to miss.  Individual tickets are now available for $50 each through September 1.  After this date, tickets will be $60.  You or your company may also sponsor a table of eight for the evening.  Please call the FTF office at 423.267.5383 or purchase online at  Mark your calendars for Tuesday, September 20.  We look forward to seeing you there!

Please call the FTF office at 423.267.5383 or purchase online at
Courageous, The Movie

Four men, One calling: To Protect and Serve        

Mark your calendars now for the premier of Courageous, opening nationwide on Friday, September 30! This dynamic film follows four law enforcement officers and the challenges the face as fathers in today's world. This is a must-see event for the whole family. If your church is interested in purchasing a show time for the movie, visit for details. Don't miss Courageous, in theatres September 30!


Click here to visit the official Courageous website 




Great Date Night II

October 11, 2011

Mark Gungor &  

Michael O'Brien! 


Details coming soon!!  



620 Lindsay Street
Suite 100

Chattanooga, TN 37403


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Call for Papers: Programs that Serve Low-Income Couples

Call for Papers


Submission Deadline: September 30, 2011


Mathematica Policy Research is seeking papers for a systematic review of the research on programs that serve low-income couples. The review is being conducted for the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation

(OPRE) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The attached document includes more information and submission instructions, and may be circulated to colleagues or through your organization's forums. Thank you for your assistance.


Weekly Update of UK Marriage News - No 11.34

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Dave and Liz Percival" <>
Date: Aug 22, 2011 7:46 AM
Subject: Weekly Update of UK Marriage News - No 11.34
To: <>

Welcome to this week's UK Marriage News


. David Cameron: 'I want a family test applied to all domestic

. Cohabitation, not divorce, is now linked to rising rates of family
instability in America

. Wired for failure?

Government and Political

. David Cameron: 'I want a family test applied to all domestic

The <>
Relationships Foundation has welcomed the
<> Prime
Minister's statement in response to recent rioting in some UK cities: "from
here on I want a family test applied to all domestic policy. If it hurts
families, if it undermines commitment, if it tramples over the values that
keeps people together, or stops families from being together, then we
shouldn't do it."

Michael Trend, Executive Director of the Relationships Foundation said: "We
now urge the government to consider our proposals to show how 'Family
Proofing' of policy should analyse the consequences of any policy,
regardless of whether it is explicitly aimed at families, for its impact on
family relationships and wellbeing. We also exhort the government to
consider putting such a radical policy shift in the easily-understood
context of what we have called the 'Triple Test' - that policy development,
proposals for legislation and government action should all be subject to a
triple test - economic, environmental and social.

"The Relationships Foundation has been making the case for a clear
over-arching family policy for a number of years. We begin our days in
families, and they care for us in old age. Our families touch every aspect
of our development as human beings, and of our lives at work, at home, and
in society. As such they offer the greatest potential for social change, for
wealth, and wellbeing. Sideline family policy and you court systemic

"Families, are at the heart of a big society. They have intrinsic importance
for the sense of connectedness, support, identity, moral development and
belonging they enable. They contribute directly to wellbeing - a key
government goal. In particular, government has an interest in strengthening
family relationships that are more likely to support reduced anti-social
behaviour and improved community safety through addressing the relational
causes of crime (eg, unmediated peer influences).

"At the Relationships Foundation we have long argued that families need
support now more than ever before. We must move beyond the point where
politicians are wary of using language which suggests that enabling good
relationships is the business of the state. The state already is heavily
involved. Taxpayers pick up many of the costs when relationships fail.
Families are under pressure and government must move to provide motivation,
opportunity and support for family relationships.

"We don't doubt the Prime Minister's sincerity when he talks about family
policy but we have often pointed out the many missed opportunities that have
already occurred during his government due to failure to follow through on
the intention of making the UK a more 'family-friendly' country. The single
most important practical development we would like to see now is for the
Prime Minister to formally place family policy at the heart of his
government, by locating responsibility for it directly where he can keep a
close eye on it - either at Number 10 or at the Cabinet Office."

Research and Public Opinion

. Cohabitation, not divorce, is now linked to rising rates of family
instability in America

Released this week by a group of 18 family scholars, Why Marriage Matters
powerfully summarizes major new findings from the social sciences on the
state of marriage and family life in the U.S. While divorce rates for
families with children have fallen, family instability continues to increase
for the nation's children overall, in part because more than 40 percent of
American children will now spend time in a cohabiting household.

This week, the Centre for Marriage and Families released Why Marriage
Matters: Thirty Conclusions from the Social Sciences, a scholarly report
that includes major new findings on the impact of cohabitation and divorce
on children and families. This third edition of Why Marriage Matters is
co-sponsored by the Centre for Marriage and Families at the Institute for
American Values and the National Marriage Project at the University of
Virginia. Chaired by Professor W. Bradford Wilcox of the University of
Virginia, the report is co-authored by eighteen family scholars from leading
institutions including the University of California at Berkeley, Brookings
Institution, University of Chicago, Penn State, University of Minnesota,
University of Texas at Austin, Urban Institute, and the University of

For most of the latter-half of the twentieth century, divorce posed the
greatest threat to child well-being and the institution of marriage. Today,
that is not the case. New research-made available for the first time in Why
Marriage Matters-suggests that the rise of cohabiting households with
children is the largest unrecognized threat to the quality and stability of
children's lives in today's families.

According to W. Bradford Wilcox, lead author of the report, "In a striking
turn of events, the divorce rate for married couples with children has
returned almost to the levels we saw before the divorce revolution kicked in
during the 1970s. Nevertheless, family instability is on the rise for
American children as a whole. This seems in part to be because more couples
are having children in cohabiting unions, which are very unstable. This
report also indicates that children in cohabiting households are more likely
to suffer from a range of emotional and social problems-drug use,
depression, and dropping out of high school-compared to children in intact,
married families."

Major findings of the report include:

. Divorces involving children have largely returned to pre-Divorce
Revolution levels. Specifically, about 23% of children whose parents married
in the early 1960s divorced by the time the children turned 10. More
recently, slightly more than 23% of children whose parents married in 1997
divorced by the time the kids turned 10.

. Family instability for U.S. children overall continues to
increase. The data shows that 66% of 16-year-olds were living with both
parents in the early 1980s, compared to just 55% of 16-year-olds in the
early 2000s. This shift is linked to more children being born outside of
marriage-especially to cohabiting couples-and the fact that these
non-marital unions are overall much less stable.

. Cohabitation is playing a growing role in children's lives.
Children are now more likely to be exposed to a cohabiting union than to a
parental divorce. The report indicates that 24% of kids born to married
parents will see their own parents divorce or separate by age 12, while 42%
of kids will experience a parental cohabitation by age 12.

. Children born to cohabiting unions are much more likely to
experience a parental break-up compared to children born to married couples.
In the U.S., the report finds that the break-up rate is 170% higher for
children born to cohabiting couples up to age 12. Even in Sweden, children
born to cohabiting couples are 70% more likely to see parents separate by
age 15, compared to children born to married parents.

. Not only is cohabitation less stable, it is more dangerous for
children. Federal data shows that children are at least three times more
likely to be physically, sexually, or emotionally abused in cohabiting
households, compared to children in intact, biological married parent homes.
They are also significantly more likely to experience delinquency, drug use,
and school failure.

Based on the new data now available, the authors of Why Marriage Matters
offer three conclusions regarding marriage and families in America today:

1. The intact, biological, married family remains the Gold Standard for
family life in the United States. Children are most likely to thrive,
economically, socially, and psychologically, in this family form.

2. Marriage is an important public good, associated with a range of
economic, health, educational, and safety benefits that help local, state,
and federal governments serve the common good.

3. The benefits of marriage extend to poor, working class, and minority
communities, despite the fact that marriage has weakened in these
communities in the last four decades.

The report surveys more than 250 peer-reviewed journal articles on marriage
and family life in the United States and around the world, and also contains
original analysis of data from the General Social Survey and the Survey of
Income and Program Participation.

. Australian Trends in couple dissolution: An update

The <> new
edition of the AIFS Newsletter is out this week - plenty of interesting
stuff - this in particular resonated.

Patterns of couple formation and dissolution in Australia have changed
significantly over a number of decades. Such changes represent a response to
the interaction of many factors, including other life course changes,
technological advancements, labour market and economic forces, and evolving
social values and attitudes. In turn, trends in couple formation and
dissolution contribute to social values and attitudes and to other
family-related trends, such as fertility rates. It is important to monitor
family trends, not only to understand the current circumstances of families,
but also to gain insight into the future direction of changes, reasons
behind them and their implications - all of which can feed into the shaping
of proactive policy responses. This article updates trends in couple
dissolution that formed the basis of an article that was published in the
second edition of Family Relationships Quarterly (Weston & Qu, 2006), and
includes additional information concerning the duration of marriages and
differences in rates of relationship dissolution for marriages and
cohabiting unions.

We picked out this in particular - The stability of cohabitation:

Given that some couples live together outside a registered marriage (here
called "cohabitation"), trends in divorce do not present a complete picture
of relationship separation. Table 1 shows that cohabitating relationships
are far more likely to dissolve than marriages. Here, attention is directed
to the cohabiting unions which represent the first live-in relationship
experienced by one or both partners.

. Regardless of the period in which cohabitation or marriage began,
the likelihood of a cohabiting relationship ending in separation within 5
years was three to five times the likelihood of a marriage ending in divorce
within 5 years (25-38% vs 7-9%).

. The proportion of marriages that ended in divorce within 5 years
increased slightly over the period shown (from 7% of marriages starting in
1975-76 to 9% of marriages starting in 1994-95).

. Similarly, the proportion of cohabiting relationships that ended
in separation increased over the period shown (from 25% of cohabitating
unions that began in 1970-74 to 38% that began in 1990-94).

. However, for the entire period covered in Table 1 (approximately
20 years), the rate of separation among cohabiting couples increased to a
greater extent than the rate of divorce among married couples.

It is not surprising that cohabiting relationships are less stable than
marriages, given that the circumstances surrounding cohabitation can be
diverse (Qu & Western, 2001). For example, some couples may embark on
cohabitation as a trial marriage or as a prelude to marriage and others may
live together for practical reasons without strong commitment.

Table 1. Rates of relationship dissolution: Cohabitation versus marriage by
period in which cohabitation or marriage began Cohabitation a Marriage:



Year began living together

Separated within 5 years (%)

Year of marriage

Divorced within 5 years (%)





















. Research links childhood maltreatment to long-term depression

The <>
Institute of Psychiatry at King's College London has found that individuals
who experienced childhood maltreatment are twice as likely as those without
a history of childhood maltreatment to develop both multiple and
long-lasting depressive episodes. The findings published in the American
Journal of Psychiatry also show that maltreated individuals are more likely
to respond poorly to pharmacological and psychological treatment for
depression compared to non-maltreated individuals.

Dr Andrew McCulloch, Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation,
responds: "We hope that this research will raise awareness of the links
between mental ill-health and childhood experiences of poverty, abuse, poor
parenting and bereavement.

Different treatment responses need to be developed for individuals who have
experienced childhood maltreatment as such experiences can impact on an
individual's biological and psychological development, placing them at a
higher risk of developing multiple and long-lasting mental health

More research into intervention methods for this group is needed, and more
resources are required to support existing treatments and to make them more
specific to an individual's needs. This time of economic uncertainty should
not be used as an excuse to ignore these asks, but instead to pursue them,
as investing in mental health interventions and treatments now will prevent
additional costs in the future generated by the worsening of people's mental
health if these problems are not tackled."

. Women gain weight after marriage, men after divorce

Women are most likely to gain weight after marriage while men tend to pile
on the pounds following a divorce, according to research
fter-marriage-men-after-divorce.html> reports the Daily Telegraph. A study
of more than 10,000 people surveyed between 1986 and 2008 found that both
marrying and getting divorced can have a "weight shock" effect that leads to
rapid weight gain, especially in over-30s. But there was a marked difference
between men and women in which marital event was the most traumatic on the

Researchers used data from a national survey in which men and women were
weighed every year to see how many pounds they gained or lost in the two
years following a marriage or divorce. Up to the age of 30 there was little
impact on the weight of either men or women, but after this point the
probability of weight gain after marriage or divorce began to rise steadily
until the age of 50. Both sexes were more likely to gain weight in the two
years after a divorce or marriage than someone who had never been married,
the research showed.

Dmitry Tumin of Ohio State University, who led the study, said: "Clearly,
the effect of marital transitions on weight changes differs by gender.
Divorces for men and, to some extent, marriages for women promote weight
gains that may be large enough to pose a health risk." The impact was
greatest on older people because a marriage or divorce comes as a greater
shock later in life, he added.

The study, to be presented at the annual meeting of the American
Sociological Association in Las Vegas, says it is not clear why men's and
women's waistlines respond differently to marriage and divorce. But Prof
Zhenchao Qian, one of the researchers, said: "Married women often have a
larger role around the house than men do, and they may have less time to
exercise and stay fit than similar unmarried women. On the other hand,
studies show that married men get a health benefit from marriage, and they
lose that benefit once they get divorced, which may lead to their weight

. Getting off to a bad start: If you argue on your honeymoon,
there's not much hope for your future together

Honeymoon couples that argue are more likely to have a stormy marriage over
the long term compared with newlyweds that get on well, researchers have
-argue-honeymoon-theres-hope-future-together.html> says the Daily Mail. A
study of almost 1,000 husbands and wives found little change in the rate of
rows between them over the course of 20 years. As couples grow older
together their rate of arguing is likely to stay the same, which will be
reassuring for the 16 per cent who fall out infrequently and the six out of
10 whose rows are rare. For 22 per cent of couples who say they have
arguments on their honeymoon, however, it is more likely that they will go
on to do the same throughout their married life.

The study into marital strife was carried out by Ohio State University over
a 20-year period which found there was little change in the amount of
conflict over time. Professor Claire Kamp Dush said: 'There was a very
slight decrease in the amount of conflict reported in the final years of the
study, which was slightly larger for the high-conflict couples. Still, the
differences over time were small.'

The researchers, whose findings were published in the Journal of Family
Issues, separated the respondents into high, middle and low conflict
marriages and found those in the latter group were more likely than others
to say they shared decision-making with their spouses. 'People who believe
marriage should last forever may also believe fighting is just not worth it'
Prof Kamp Dush added: 'That is interesting because you might think that
making decisions jointly would create more opportunities for conflict, but
that's not what we found. It may be that if both spouses have a say in
decision making, they are more satisfied with their relationship and are
less likely to fight.'

These people were also more likely than those who reported high levels of
conflict to say they believed in traditional, life-long marriage. Prof Dush
said: 'People who believe marriage should last forever may also believe
fighting is just not worth it. They may be more likely to just let
disagreements go.'

The results suggest there may be two types of relatively low-conflict
couples after the researchers looked at how conflict was related to overall
marital happiness by classifying marriages into four general types -
volatile, validator, hostile and avoider.

The lower conflict couples who had equal decision making tended to fall into
the validator marriage category, who report high and middle levels of
happiness and no more than middle levels of conflict. About 54 percent of
couples were in this category, and had low levels of divorce. Prof Dush
said: 'The validator marriages are often seen as positive because couples
are engaged with each other and are happy. We found that in these marriages,
each partner shared in decision making and in housework.'

The other low conflict couples were in the avoider marriages (six per cent)
and these had more traditional relationships in which husbands were not
involved in housework and where the participants believed in lifelong
marriage. Prof Kamp Dush said: 'These couples believed in traditional gender
roles and may have avoided conflict because of their beliefs in lifelong
marriage. These couples were also unlikely to divorce.'

About 20 per cent of those surveyed were in volatile marriages - high
conflict and high or middle levels of happiness - and the remainder were in
hostile ones, which were the most likely to divorce.

Prof Kamp Dush said while couples in both validator and avoider marriages
tended to have lower levels of conflict, validator marriages may be the
healthiest. She added: 'Avoiding conflict could lead couples to avoid other
types of engagement with their spouse. A healthy marriage needs to have both
spouses engaged and invested in the relationship.'

. Marriage TRIPLES your chances of surviving major heart surgery

Married couples are three times more likely to survive major heart surgery
than cohabiting ones, researchers say
survival-major-heart-surgery.html> reports the Daily Mail. However, the
scientists from the University of Rochester in New York found that while men
benefited no matter what the state of their marriage, women were only
boosted if they were content in their union.

'There is something in a good relationship that helps people stay on track',
said lead author Professor Kathleen King. Surprisingly marital satisfaction
was found to be just as important to survival as smoking, obesity and high
blood pressure. While unhappy marriages provide virtually no survival bonus
for women, satisfying unions increase a wife's survival rate almost
fourfold, the study found. 'Wives need to feel satisfied in their
relationships to reap a health dividend,' said study co-author Professor
Harry Reis. 'But the payoff for marital bliss is even greater for women than
for men.

The team followed 225 people who had bypass surgery between 1987 and 1990.
They asked married participants to rate their relationship satisfaction one
year after surgery. The study, published in Health Psychology, adjusted for
age, sex, education, depressed mood, tobacco use, and other factors known to
affect survival rates for cardiovascular disease.

Fifteen years after surgery, 83 per cent of happily wedded wives were still
alive, versus 28 per cent of women in unhappy marriages and 27 per cent of
unmarried women.

The survival rate for contented husbands was also 83 per cent, but even the
not-so-happily married fared well. Men in less-than-satisfying unions
enjoyed a survival rate of 60 per cent, significantly better than the 36
percent rate for unmarried men.

'Other research has shown that women are more physiologically sensitive to
relationship distress than men, so an unhappy marriage can take a greater
toll on their health,' Professor Reis said. Professor King said coronary
bypass surgery was a temporary solution as patients were susceptible to
clogging after the operation. Therefore it was essential to look at
conditions that help patients to beat the odds. She said supportive husbands
and wives were likely to help encourage healthy behaviour and patients in a
nurturing marriage had more motivation to care for themselves.

Earlier research found people with lower hostility in their marriages had
less of the kind of inflammation that is linked to heart disease

Forthcoming conferences and events

. Forthcoming conferences

Details of all forthcoming conferences can always be found under our listing
at <> 2-in-2-1

Consultations and Campaigns

Below is our running list of current and recent consultations and campaigns.
New items or those requiring action are highlighted. The Reference numbers
are to the newsletter where we covered the subject.

. Review of Personal, Social, Health and Economics (PSHE) Education

The Government said in the Schools White Paper, The Importance of Teaching,
that it would conduct an internal review to determine how to support schools
to improve the quality of teaching of personal, social, health and economic
(PSHE) education, including giving teachers the flexibility to use their
judgement about how best to deliver PSHE education

ils&consultationId=1759&external=no&menu=1> request for representations
seeks your views on the core body of knowledge that pupils need to learn
through PSHE education teaching and ways to improve the quality of teaching.

Closing Date: Wednesday 30 November 2011

Soap Box!!

. Wired for failure

Like many of you reading this week's newsletter, I am currently connected to
the web by a wireless link - clever software plus some transmitters and
receivers ensure that I can wander round my office/home/coffee shop etc and
be seamlessly connected. I still also have a hard wired connection to my
office - it's great advantage is its speed and reliability - its big
disadvantage is the lack of adaptability and the fact that it only goes to
one place.

The human brain is a bit like my network (though fortunately a good deal
more reliable! Some aspects are hard wired (eg physical reflexes like
blinking, or breathing!) whilst others are more like software and can be
learned, unlearned, changed etc as life develops.

When the <> WAVE Trust started looking at the
impact of poor attachment of infants to their parents they discovered that
not only were there short term impacts upon the child's levels of
contentment etc, but that these changes were being hard wired into the
infant's developing brain. Physiological changes to the brain could be seen
on scanners indicating that permanent neurological changes were taking place
that couldn't simply be re-programmed. The results were an increased
propensity for violence when subjected to particular triggers that continue
into adulthood.

What I found fascinating in this week's news was the fact that the
Institute of Psychiatry at King's College London has found that individuals
who experienced childhood maltreatment are twice as likely as those without
a history of childhood maltreatment to develop both multiple and
long-lasting depressive episodes. What's more "Different treatment responses
need to be developed for individuals who have experienced childhood
maltreatment as such experiences can impact on an individual's biological
and psychological development, placing them at a higher risk of developing
multiple and long-lasting mental health conditions."

This looks to me as if the same mechanisms are in play - the impact of early
life experiences hard wiring responses that show up in later life.

The problem with hard-wired systems is that they are very hard to change -
in fact in general one has to manage the problem (by managing triggers etc)
rather than actually modifying the system.

What's perhaps even more worrying is that there are clear mechanisms for
generational transmission - not through genetics, but through behaviour.
Couples where one or both partners have a propensity to anxiety, depression
or even violence are more likely to struggle to form lasting couple
relationships, and are likely as a result to expose their children to
increased likelihood of parental breakdown, poor parenting, and abandonment
leading to more poor attachment. Another vicious spiral that traps the next
generation. The good news however is that this isn't genetic its

Since the problems are hard wired one cannot "fix" the brains affected -
instead the only solutions are to manage the triggers. Equipping couples
with relationship skills, and helping them make the long term commitments to
mutual support, provides the lowest risk environment for perpetuating the
problems. With a foundation of a solid adult relationship, improvements to
parenting skills are most likely to effective in building stronger bonds
with the next generation

Once again focus on building strong couple bonds offers a way forward - we
don't have to be wired for failure.

Best wishes,

<> The 2-in-2-1 Team

Technical Stuff

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Monthly MM's & PP's - SEPTEMBER 2011

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Susan Vogt <>
Date: Mon, Aug 22, 2011 at 7:00 AM
Subject: Monthly MM's & PP's - SEPTEMBER 2011

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Marriage Moments & Parenting Pointers



Family heart


I offer you these tidbits of wisdom as prayer prompts to remind you (and your constituents) of the sacredness of marriage vows and the value of every child. The commitment to love a spouse forever, and the generous gift of life parents offer a child are indeed spiritual under-takings and cannot be done alone. May the God of Love be with you and your work.

FOR MORE extended marriage and parenting articles, plus archived Marriage Moments and Parenting Pointers, go to:
*BLOG: Letting Go...

*EDUCATORS, LEADERS, & MINISTERS: You are welcome to reprint these MM's and PP's in bulletins, newsletters, and on your website with proper credit, ("By Susan Vogt,")
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Forward to a Friend 

Dear Bill ,
Below are your Marriage Moments and Parenting Pointers for SEPTEMBER.


Note: My September Family Resource is Dealing with Fear.


Shameless plug: My latest book, Money in the Kingdom of God, has just been published. It's a Bible study on use of possessions. I also have a Facebook group, Living Lightly


432. Sept. 5: (Labor Day) "Come to me, all you who labor and are overburdened and I will give you rest." (Mt. 11:28). For those who have full time jobs (whether paid or in the home) this is a comforting scripture. Unemployment, however, can be a stress on marriage. Pray for those who need money but can't find work. Maybe it's you.


433. Sept. 12: "Love is no assignment for cowards." (Ovid) Have you ever stood up for your spouse? Perhaps someone was making fun of her. Or maybe other wives were mocking their husbands and it would have been easy to join the banter. Be true to your absent spouse.


434. Sept. 19: Although flexibility is important in a marriage, sometimes relationships break down when one partner takes life too loosely. It's hard when you don't know if you can depend on your spouse to meet a deadline or a commitment. What's your spouse good at remembering?


435. Sept. 26: When good secretaries take a message they always repeat the telephone number and summarize the message. Your spouse deserves similar service. "Now you said ... Did I get it right?" Saves a lot of misunderstandings and mix-ups.


431. Sept. 2: As school starts, it's helpful to have routines. For example: Set out school supplies and clothes the night before. No "screen time" till after homework is done. No cell phones after bedtime. What are your family rules?


432. Sept. 9: (Anniversary of 9/11) This Sunday the USA remembers with sadness the tragedy of 9/11. It was a day of fear that prompted a decade of security measures. Help your children move beyond their fears. (See my Family Activity, Dealing with Fears.)


433. Sept. 16: "I was sick and you visited me." (Mt. 25:35) Parents readily do this corporal work of mercy each time our child has a cold or we kiss a boo boo. But what about those physically or mentally ill people outside our family? Does someone need a visit? Take a child with you.


434. Sept. 23: Next Monday is National Family Day. The focus is on eating together with your children. If your children are young, this is easy. They need you to cook. If they are older, make an effort to eat together - if not Monday, one day next week.


435. Sept. 30: "I was in prison and you came to see me." (Mt. 25:35) Now this might seem like a hard work of mercy to do with a child. Consider, however, that sending a child to her room or "time out" is a kind of imprisonment. Give them a way to redeem themselves afterwards.

© 2011 Susan Vogt
MAIL: 523 E. Southern Ave., Covington, KY 41015
PHONE: (859) 291-6197, FAX: (859) 291-4742
This email was sent to by |  
Susan Vogt | 523 E. Southern Ave | Covington | KY | 41015

Family Structure and Children's Health


Attached is the study I talked about.  

No. 246. Family Structure and Children's Health in the United States: Findings From the National Health Interview Survey, 2001-2007. 176 pp. (PHS) 2011-1574.  Adobe PDF file [PDF - 2.4 MB]


Have a great weekend!




Joneen Mackenzie RN,BSN

The Center For Relationship Education

President / Founder

8101 E. Belleview Avenue

Suite D-2

Denver, CO 80237

720.488.8888 ext 201

Cell: 303.888.1895



When men and women fail to form stable marriages, the first result is a vast expansion of government attempts  to cope with the terrible social needs that result.  There is scarcely a dollar that the state and federal government spends on social programs that is not driven, in large part, by family fragmentation:  crime, poverty, drug abuse, teen pregnancy, school failure, mental and physical health problems.

-Maggie Gallagher