Top 7 Marriage Preparation Lessons Flavia and I Learned

By

Vince Del Monte, WBFF Pro Fitness Model, Certified Fitness Trainer
and Nutritionist and author of No Nonsense Muscle
Building.

First off, this was hosted through our church, The Meeting House in Oakville, Ontario and the content was created by Herman Chow, if you wish to pursue info for yourself.  Honestly, this guy was SPECTACULAR!

The interesting thing on this 2-day workshop was that almost all the information was statistically backed up and research based.  This was not the teachers opinion or personal experiences with himself or his patients.

Top 10 Marriage Preparation Lessons Flavia and I Learned

By Vince Del Monte and Flavia Dragos

1. Couple who took a pre-marital education class reduced their risk of divorce by 31%!

Taking a skill based pre-marital education class is associated with higher levels of marital satisfaction, lower levels of destructive conflicts and higher levels of interpersonal commitment to spouses.  This is truly amazing!  Here are the 3 things the course did for Flavia and I:

a) Preparation: I think we’re both more realistic in what to expect, less idealistic and more realistic.  An example for us is that we’re not idealistic to believe that we have a perfect relationship and we won’t have issues.  I think I always wanted to portray this “perfect” relationship and I’m prepared to let that go.

b) Education: We learned really cool tools and techniques to have a “good fight” and really fun and safe ways to discuss our sexual expectations.  For example, during a fight, Flavia feels disconnected from me if we argue so when we fight, I put my hand on her shoulder and that seems to resolve 50% of the tension.  Not a bad start.

c) Communication: We got to talk about topics we had not brought up in our dating.  One was, “family of origin” and talking about our families shaped us and what we liked about our upbringing and what we did not like.  We got to talk about sex and fiances quite a bit too.

2. “Therefore shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave until his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” – Genesis 2:24

Whether you believe in the Bible or not does not matter.  This verse really hit home for us.  Let me elaborate on this verse:

…leave his mother and father.

  • I was afraid the word “leave” meant that we have to cut off from our parents. It means creating appropriate boundaries, which means our parents can’t just pop into our house on a random Sunday without letting us know.  Did you read that Mom and Dad? 🙂
  • We still listen and respect our parents advice but from here on out, Flavia and I make our OWN decisions based on what’s important to us.

cleave until his wife.

  • “Cleave” means stick to or glue to. When you try to separate 2 pieces of paper that are glued together, you will rip them apart and leave a scar behind.  Sadly, most people in society get married with paper clips instead of glue. We want our marriage to be represented under God’s intentions which is for a couple to “cleave”. Next time you see me, feel free to ask me, “So how’s the cleaving going?”

shall be one flesh…

  • This represents the closeness and oneness between a couple.  Some of the guys in the room were shocked to find out this oneness was more than just sexual. LOL  It includes be one emotional, intellectual, spiritual, recreational and any other area you can bond.
  • Intimacy does not exclude uniqueness.  This was very refreshing because Flavia and I are two different individuals with different interests and hobbies. Being one flesh does not mean we are in separable and don’t have our own lives.  This means it’s still okay to have my “boys night” and for her to have her “girls night.”

3. Communication 101

  • Create a safe environment. Ever have a fight from across the room? I found out that Flavia needs a physical connection while we are fighting or else she feels disconnected and makes the fight worse.  This one it taking a little while for Vinny to get good at!
  • Focus on the conversation. Ever been in a fight and then check your BlackBerry?  Yeah, I did that once and it didn’t help!  In fact, it started another fight!  Eliminate all distractions when communicating.

  • Stay on one topic at a time. Ladies are mostly guilty of this one.  Has your lady ever been addressing an issue with you and then all of a sudden a new issue arises from the original issue?  Stay on one topic at a time.  Here’s my new line when this happens: “Babe, I can see we many things to discuss, can we focus on the first thing before we talk about the second and third thing.  I want to understand what the first thing means to you?”   (You can thank me below fellas).
  • Pay attention to your tone and non-verbal language. You cannot not communicate.  Even when you are not talking, you are saying something with your body language or tone. I’m guilty of rolling the eyes, raising my voice and sometimes even yawning.  Don’t laugh, it’s not funny!
  • Use “I” messages instead of “You” messages.  “You” messages are dangerous.  Stuff like You are always late. You are so irresponsible. When you do this, you provoke a defensive reaction and now they must put up a wall for protection and things only get worse… Use “I” messages instead: I felt lonely and worried when you didn’t call when you said you were going to call and I was worried something happened to you. When Flavia speaks like this to me then I feel less defensive and more open.

Check out this crazy study:  Marriage expert, Dr. John Gottman followed 130 newlyweds for 6 years in his “love lab.” He discovered that he could predict whether a divorce will occur between couples. he predicted a divorce will likely occur when the couple don’t have at least a ratio of 5 to 1 (5 positive feeling and interactions to 1 negative one in their daily conversation).

Crazy eh?  This means, if I watched you and your spouse interact for 5-minutes and the guy said 5 negative things to the girl and only 1 positive thing, there is good chance for divorce.

Vince Delmonte and Flavia – Marriage Lessons

4. Discuss “Family Of Origin”

We acknowledged that our families have passed down good influences and bad influences.  We also realized that every family passes down “curses” (dysfunctions) and each person has the power to break the family curse at his/her generation.  Did you need some fun topics for your next “date night”?  (BTW – that movie Date Night is really funny – we just saw it last night).

  • What was it like growing up based on your birth order?
  • What is your family culture and how did it influence you?
  • On a scale of 1-to-1o, describe your relationship with your Mom, Dad, brother, sister etc
  • What were some “rules” you grew up with?
  • What did you learn from your father?
  • What did you learn from your mother?
  • What were some major events for your family growing up?
  • What were the most helpful things you learned from your family?
  • What were some not so helpful things you learned from your family?
  • What did leadership look like in your family?

Yo!  Fellas, if you’re single, I just hooked you up with ten awesome questions for your next date!  Stir up some  of these questions and I’m sure you’ll have some good conversation.

5. Conflict Resolution

This was a really big one for us because we both tend to avoid conflict so were shocked to discover the following:

  • Number 1 predictor of divorce is: conflict avoidance! That’s right: couples who avoided conflict and swept it under the rug had a higher chance of divorce then couples who addressed issues.
  • Top 5 things couples fight about in first 5 years of marriage: time, sex, money.
  • Over 69% of conflicts/differences are NOT resolvable!  That blew me away.  The key is to learn how to manage and cope with the differences.  Here’s an example.  Flavia loves to recycle and separate all the trash – I could care less.  There’s no point fighting over this – neither of us are going to change. We’ll both learn how to mange with those differences.
  • Kiss and make up. Good fights should bring you closer together and you should feel more connected and not afraid to have a conflict next time.
  • Come up with rules for when you fight. This is POWERFUL.  Here are some of our rules: no hitting (Flavia likes to choke punch me), no speaking over each other, no fighting if alcohol is present (this never ends well), hold hands while fighting, deal with it as soon as possible, no blaming and most importantly – when it’s resolved it’s resolved.  NO BRINGING UP THE PAST.  This one bullet above has been a GAME CHANGER for us. You won’t get it right every time but it gives something to both shoot for.

6. Handling Finances

We learned the number one source of marital tension is finances.  Did you know that average house hold debt between personal loans, line of credit and mortgage debt is $69.450 (Canadian stats). That would stress me out!

Interestingly, it does not matter if you’re filthy rich, have an average income, or are poor – finances is still one of the top three issues couples fight about.  Why? It’s because what money represents: power, greed, different spending styles etc.  It’s not the the actual dollar amount that causes tension.

I found this fascinating and could really relate.  I have more “lavish” tastes and like to eat in nice restaurants and get caught up in the nice cars, designer jeans and living the “good life.”  Flavia, on the other hand, definitely likes to splurge every once and awhile but it’s low on her priority list and she finds other things more important.

7. Ture and False About SEX

a) Sex should be spontaneous. Don’t just talk, Just Do It!

FALSE. Yes, we’ll be having a lot of spontaneous sex but we learned that planned sex is even better. Why?  First, you know you’re getting some. Second, you can plan and talk about how you want it.  This leads to improvement and better, longer, faster, harder… okay I’m getting carried, away.  Opps, did I say faster?   I meant to say, this leads to better sex 🙂

b) Sex is natural and simple. You should just know how to do it.

FALSE. Although sex is natural, but so is eating and peeing, and you probably don’t show your kids how to eat and pee properly.  Some things are just not talked about growing up so don’t expect your partner to know everything on their wedding night.

c) If the wife doesn’t have a orgasm during sex, the man did something wrong.

FALSE. 30% of women even have a orgasm during sex. It does not mean she did not enjoy it.  I’m not going to expand too much further on this point here…

d) Size and length matter in sex.

FALSE (sometimes). This is true for some people, some of the time – but not true for everyone, all the time.  How was that answer?  I saved myself there eh?  Bottom line: certain people have certain preferences and certain moods perk those preferences.  Remember, it’s about quality, not quantity.

e) Women do not need sex as much as men.

FALSE (Hallelujah)! Women desire it just as much as the next guy.  The only difference is that men get warmed up far faster and women (for the most part) take a little longer to get warmed up. I guess I can manage that difference.

f) Married people are significantly more likely to have more satisfying sex.

TRUE. This makes sense.  Having sex with a stranger could feel like you’re on audition. (If it doesn’t then you be on track for having a reputation as a “player” and trust me – “players” don’t attract respectable and high-class girls.  Don’t let the guys from the Jersey Shore tell you otherwise).   Sure, sleeping around allows you experience 1 layer of the opposite sex but don’t you want something deeper?

I learned this back in high school.  Someone said to me:

“Vince, you got to figure out what you want.  You can either experience one girl at a hundred different levels.  Or you can experience 100 girls at one level.  Which will do you think will give you more fulfillment?  Remember, you can’t have both lifestyles.”

There’s a thought for all you single guys playing the field (and trust me, I did my fair share of playing the field) and it doesn’t come even close to what I have with Flavia.

Here’s one more quote for you single guys or committed guys who are having trouble keeping their eyes on the beautiful girl they have right in front of them – The grass is not greener on the other side.  The grass is green where you water it!” Did you get that?  Focus on what you have and not what you don’t have.

So you can see that I took some pretty crazy notes eh?  A lot of these are Flavia’s notes too so I’m sure males and females got some golden gems.  You probably should print this article off and highlight some the key points.

Start by summarizing your favourite take-aways below.  i would love to hear what stood out to you from our learning.

Vince and Flavia

P.S. As you can see – I’m passionate about more than just muscle.  I appreciate you taking the time to read the lessons Flavia and learned in our 2-day marriage preparation course and if you feel like something like this would benefit you, just connected with a church in your area.  This is where we got all of this information!  No kidding eh?  The church we go to is called The Meeting House and you can download a lot of free info from their site: http://www.themeethinghouse.ca if you want to improve the relational area of your life.

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Comments

64 thoughts on “Top 7 Marriage Preparation Lessons Flavia and I Learned

  1. Good stuff man, I remember the first time I asked my perfect match out that I told her no bs mind games because I hate how 90% of relationships (for me at least) become power struggles. Honesty and loyalty go a long way

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  2. Flavia and Vince
    Greetings from Hong Kong
    A great post!
    The whole thing is very informative and inspring
    I will turn 36 next week, being single for 5 years,
    What's in this post give me a road map for my future relations…
    Thanks a lot!
    Victor

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  3. Great lessons! Too bad they don't teach this kind of stuff at school. It's funny because this relationship advice is obviously more important than learning how to dissect a frog or how to simplify a polynomial or crap like that and yet it is no where to found at school.s 🙁

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  4. Very nice posts, ecspecialy the last one, even if i didnt reach the age to know it! the sonner you know the better, thats my oppinion, i cant wait to see you at the wedding and to recive the first phase of MYM!

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  5. Very intresting, the last one is the snickiest even if im not the age to do that, its good to know before.
    But what exactly does bothers me is comunication, ive never been able to comunicate properly with a girl, theyr either too stupid or too shy or they dont care about me. But i belive that MYM will help me make them respect me just by the way i look. Really cant wait to get it!

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  6. Hey Vince and Flavia,

    Great article. Although I still have years before I ever get married, I'm saving this to my computer so I can reference it when I need to. Awesome notes. I'm going to send my parents this link and see what they think about it 🙂

    You guys are the greatest couple ever. All the best to you guys and I know both of you will have a very fulfilling marriage.

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  7. hey vince

    as your dad I am very proud of the way you and Flavia are seeking to live in a way that is helpful to others and that you no longer learn and apply something to your own lives, that you then turn around and pass along the joy of these insights to others.

    you are a great example of a couple that live to love and love to live.

    love,

    Dad Luch

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  8. Sounds like that was some good marriage counseling and good that you all went to it because too many end in divorce now and it shouldn´t be that way. God did not mean for it to be that way. I have been a Christian since 1977 after a tragic car wreck where my first wife was killed. The truth is if you both will Love God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself and you Love her as Christ Loved the Church and she is submisive to your LOVING leadership and you both study,obey,and live by God´s word you will have the most beautiful life together not that you won´t still have problems but you will have a close relationship with the one that can solve all problems if you are willing to let Him. David

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  9. Vince,
    Great post. Another thing that has helped me a great deal in my 15 years of marriage is to learn my wifes love language. Hers is act of service, so when I do something like taking out the trash or emptying the dishwasher it makes her feel loved. Acts of service also happens to be the least on my list. My love langauge is words of affirmation. Best wishes to Flavia and you on your marriage.

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    • The 5 languages of love hey! (-:

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  10. Pingback: Deadlifts, Abs, & Muscle Building « Belly Off: Meet the Trainer

  11. Hi Vince,

    Thank you for being so honest and open and sharing these tips on marriage preparation. I found it very refreshing to hear your take on this. It certainly makes people think seriously about the preparation and commitment not just to marriage but in relationships generally. The points you raise are very inspiring too. Thanks for this post.

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  12. Vince,

    This is a great blog post. I wish you and Flavia all the best! God bless.

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  13. Those pesky family-of-origin issues can be more problematic than many folks give them credit for. And these attitudes ARE passed on from one generation to the next. After considerable (and emotionally painful) study, I was able to pinpoint the dysfunction in my family: perfectionism, judgmentalism, and negativity. Neither my wife nor myself learned how to "fight." In my family, fighting was "bad." If you had to fight, that meant that there was something wrong with you–so I avoided confrontation at ALL costs. Thankfully, I found a 12 Step program to help me. I would encourage anybody who even THINKS that they "may" have family-of-origin "issues" to check out AdultChildren.org and click on the link "The Problem."

    The rest of your stuff was awesome, too! Best of luck to you and Flavia!

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  14. Vince, this is the best stuff I have seen you post and the most transparent. Thanks for putting it out there. I teach this stuff, so it is good to see a student that pays attention.

    I am married to the only woman I have ever made love to. We both waited till we were married and were 30 at the time. We have been married 12 years now. The relationship and the sex keeps getting better. Honor God and He will honor your efforts.

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  15. Hi Vince
    When I got married, my dad said I have to choose whether I want to be Right or Happy. After 6 years of happy marriage, you know which one I chose!
    Jokes aside, I think its great that for a guy of your stature and popularity, you are not ashamed to say what role church plays in your life. Best advice is to keep Christ in your marriage and all your decisions and everything will work out for the good.
    Good luck for the wedding and God bless!
    Brindley

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  16. Wonderful post and it's so refreshing to see a couple who take their marriage seriously enough to take a preparedness class and bring back lots of notes to share. You guys are off to a great and solid start!

    I would have to disagree with you on the sex part (c). I believe it's that kind of attitude or acceptance that lots of women don't want to have sex as often as men. Why should they when they only have a 30% chance (or less!) of orgasm?! The "goal" for a couple should be a 1:1 ratio, sometimes you get there, sometimes you don't, but the goal should always be there! 🙂

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  17. Wow, it takes some courage to write so honestly. You’re already a step ahead.

    #3,4 and 5 are key for us. We’ve been married 12 years this summer but did marry young. I was 20, my hubby 23. People thought we were crazy because we hadn’t “played the field”. I always asked “why would I when we fit so well?”. It still holds true today. But we talk, we talk about money, sex, things that bother us, things that we appreciate from each other, raising kids (make sure on the same page or at least understand each others expectations about that as well before you go there). WE TALK. It makes such a difference. Hey, you’ll never what your partner is willing to do (especially in the bedroom) or change until you ASK them.

    We too took a marriage prep course through our church. It’s really key because so many couples plan the wedding but never plan the marriage. It takes time and effort to have a good marriage and appreciate your partner. Those that don’t get lost in the day to day but it’s about so much more than that.

    Good luck to you both.
    Kelsey

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  18. Vince & Flavia,
    Best wishes for a long and happy life together. We were also fortunate to have pre-marital counciling through ourt church and it was all you've said and more. Many 'eye opening' conversations and insights. I've been married to that same wonderful woman for nearly 24 years. The years have been both up and down as you should know or will find out. I especially appreciate your 'Communication 101' reminders as I'm currently struggling with marriage issues at this time and communication is likely the root cause.
    Sincerely,
    Bill S.

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  19. Hey Vince, I just LOVE this post! It's so refreshing to see couples putting God as their firm foundation. When a relationship is revolved around the Lord He will bless it in ways you can't even imagine.
    My favorite part was '“The grass is not greener on the other side. The grass is green where you water it!” . This is so true! I think we need reminders every so often of this because when things get tough .. the easy solution is always to get out, walk away. That maybe with someone else it would be better. Nope. I think it's important to always remember the feeling of what you felt when you first started dating. Of being in disbelief that you actually found 'the one' and not taking that person for granted. And to keep having fun together.
    My absolute fav. verse is 1 Corinthians 13 4-7 'Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.'
    I believe the world has such a distorted view of love. God is the AUTHOR of love and He explains it in that verse so pure and simple. People think the sex is love (and it is in a committed, loving marriage) but sex is meant to go deeper then the physical part. Anyways I'm way off topic lol .. but this post should be blogged all over the internet .. heck, all over the television!
    God Bless you and Flavia!
    ps. You might like this read Vince .. hope it's okay to post a link .. http://www.beliefnet.com/Faiths/Christianity/2010

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    • Thanks Heather… you can start by sharing it with your friends and then post it on your facebook page.

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  20. Vince

    Great stuff. Having just celebrated my 25th wedding anniversary, let me share a couple things I didn't see in your list.
    1. Vince, you have to be make yourself happy, and that is your gift to Flavia. Flavia, you have to make yourself happy, and that is your gift to Vince. You cannot make the other happy! You can make it easier for the other to be happy, but happiness is an inside job. (this tip is from me)
    2. Be willing to laugh – a lot – laughter will get you through some tough things. And understand that just because you thought of a comment to a situation does not mean it should be spoken. Learn when to keep your mouth shut. (this one is from my husband)

    Oh, and as far as household chores go, what works for us is that my husband likes to do the laundry and the grocery shopping and the yard work, so I do most of the cooking and the dishes. 🙂 It's no wonder we have been married so long!!!
    Best to you both

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    • LOL Sue… so true, happiness is a inside job. Flav and I both read this and will take it to heart.

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  21. HI Vince!
    I have been happily married for almost 16 years and I enjoyed reading your marriage tips. One area I think they missed was talking about dividing up household chores. That is probably the only thing that causes an argument in our marriage. Every once in a while I get tired of being the only person who does dishes & laundry! And I know my husband gets sick of being the only one who takes out the trash or does yard work. Now we make an effort to help each other with chores and not take the other for granted!
    Best of Luck to you & Flavia!
    Liz

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  22. Thanks for sharing Vinny!

    Angie and I took marriage classes prior to our wedding and we've celebrated over 10 years of marriage together. On our 10 year wedding anniversary I reflected on the similarities between marriage and fitness and posted them to my blog here…
    http://fatlossquickie.com/blog/fitness-lessons-fr

    You've achieved great success in many areas of your life Vince and I'm sure that you've noticed that most of the same principles apply to nearly any goal or dream that we set out to achieve.

    Every picture that I see of you and Flavia you both look like you are having a blast and totally enjoying life. It's absolutely awesome to see couples having fun together, getting fit together, and achieving their dreams together.

    You ROCK Vinny!

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  23. Hi Vince, I like tip #3 best. It’s essential to be able to communicate with your other half – it’s about companionship, after all! I also wanted to compliment you on your well-defined arms and flavia’s abs too, in the surfing pic. Keep it up!

    On a different note, regarding the email newsletter you just sent out, if I have purchased FPFL from John when he first had his opening sale, I would get the bonus workout, right? Also, is the workout package the exact same one you talk about later in the email (the whole awesome-sounding wedding workout package?)

    thanks in advance for answering my queries, and cheers!

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  24. Great article Vince. I was looking forward to you posting it. My wife and I never went to pre marriage counseling but we did talk very openly together about most of the things you wrote about. I think one other important things is also to never take things personally. This kind of ties into the whole thing of expressing how you feel about things by using "I" instead of attacking the other person by using "you". But even when the other person is upset about something it is often just about how they feel and so we shouldn’t always take it personally as in as an attack on ourselves. Also when it comes to disagreements it is important to treat the disagreement for what it is and not treat it as a representation of the relationship.
    I like the saying “The grass is not greener on the other side. The grass is green where you water it!” Very true. And for all those that still think the grass is greener on the other side – realize that it may initially look that way but it still will be just as hard to mow!

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  25. I TOTALLY disagree with Kay on that! If you were to ask a woman about that and were to ask them if they were disappointed if they didn’t orgasm you would find that most would say they weren’t disappointed. Anyways, the statistics say that 30% of woman just cant orgasm through intercourse alone but that a lot more woman are able to orgasm when you throw oral sex in the mix. Also, sex is a physical thing for sure but it is also an emotional thing and especially for woman it is not all about the orgasm – it is also so much about the close feeling that they gets to share with her partner – the feeling she gets of being felt loved and cared for – that whole feeling of closeness. And even for men – when you are younger it may be all about how much of a stud you can be but as you get a little older and find yourself in a loving secure relationship, sex becomes much more than just sex. Sure it is always great to have crazy swinging off the chandelier sex but there are also other times both people may be tired from work and you want to have sex but cause you are both tired neither of you have an orgasm – and that totally doesn’t mean it was bad sex.

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    • Of course you can enjoy sex without an orgasm – but turn the question around on a guy – would you continue to have sex with a person if you had an orgasm only 30% of the time? Wouldn't you change something?

      You have valid points that sex isn't only about climaxing for people, it IS the closeness, etc. etc. especially for a long term relationship. I think for a woman, the closeness and emotion that goes along with sex is the fulfilling part and the orgasm is the icing on the cake. If I had to choose icing or no icing, I would always choose the icing! Not saying that I will 100% ALWAYS get it, but if I had a choice… And that also doesn't mean that I would call it bad sex. You are completely right about women not having an orgasm with intercourse alone and my point is that there are a lot of guys out there who either don't know that and/or don't even try because they reach their end just fine and think that women are happy enough with that. Do you know what I mean?

      My friend told me years ago that sex is like pizza, when it's good, it's good, when it's bad, it's still pretty good. 🙂

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      • Right …so any sex is better than no sex (-: That has got to be true. I read something the other too that said that if sex is good then it plays a 10% role in the relationship meaning that if it is good then all other aspects tend to be healthier too and both partners are happier and then it is also not such an issue if once in a while you are both too busy or tired to have sex. They also said that if the sex is bad or neglected that it then becomes 90% of the relationship. True too cause when that is the case resentment often sets in and it suddenly stirs up all these other issues.
        I agree on your first point too……an orgasm is always a wonderful thing and probably most woman will admit too that even if they dont always orgasm, when they do it certainly is an injoyable thing. So yeah….it is up to both partners to be open together and discover together ways to pleasure each other in the most fulfilling ways.

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  26. I would also like to say congrats to you both and your post was very good. I agree communication is so very important. One thing I would like to add is never to afraid to say what you truly are feeling or believe even if you don't know how your partner will take it. Agree to disagree sometimes and never go to bed angry.

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  27. Good post Vince, after 19 yrs of wedded bliss (well 99%) I would say its communication that really brings man and wife closer together, my wife and I still talk all night about anything and everything, so keep talking. We have taken these verses to heart I hope they're an encouragement to you and Flavia,- Ecc 4:9-12.
    Keep the great posts coming.
    Cheers Brendan

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  28. Hi there Vince !
    well' i'm still 19 but after having read your thoughts on marriage , I just feel its the right time for me to get married 🙂 Jokes apart , I'll be using some of your tips on how to sustain a relationship .
    Flavia and you look simply terrific on that surf board .
    Have a happy life !

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  29. What a beautiful young couple you are, Vinny and Flavia! I wish you all the best for a happy marriage together!
    My few pennies worth (the thing I most love to do is talk to couples, or counsel people about marriage, apart from fitness of course:-)), you have learned a lot from your pre-marital counselling, that’s great. Most of it is absolutely true and sounds like material I have used….I myself, unlike most of your clients here, have been married a very long time, just passed 25 years, and I met my hubby at a Christian youth group when I was 15 years old! Don’t let anyone kid you, a good marriage is HARD work!! Having God in your marriage is the greatest thing….the closer you get to Him, the closer you get to each other. When we moved away from God for awhile….big problems, but happy to say it’s all good now!

    Great resources if you’re interested are 2 little books called “For men only” by Shaunti & Jeff Feldhahn (great resource for many of your young male readers, talks about the inner lives of women!), and “For women only” by Shaunti Feldhahn, about the inner lives of men. This was a GREAT eye-opener to me ladies, even after a long-term marriage,and get this, my gorgeous 17 year old daughter bought these books for her dad and I for Christmas…..she thinks we act like two teenagers!! These books are quick reads, so good for all you busy people! Also, try Dr Gary Chapman’s “The 5 love languages”, also excellent!
    Another wonderful resource is the marriagebuilders.com website run by Dr Harley……wonderful principles on marriage, and if your marriage is in trouble…run there!
    The grass is definately NOT greener on the other side, marriage is for life. Sorry for such a long post, will get off my soapbox now, just a thought to leave you with, “when a woman marries, she exchanges the attention of many men for the inattention of one man”. Don’t let that be true of any of you guys….you don’t water your grass, it withers and dies….and the same goes for us ladies!! God bless

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  30. Vince DelMonte = Legend

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  31. Good info. Love the quotes!

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  32. Hi Vince,

    Congrats for your decision. What I like the most of your post is the section on communication. I totally agree with you that you NOT can not communicate. The most important part however is that you have rules for “fighting” (i like the term debate/discussion more). I know it´s hard to follow this rules everytime. And leave the Past and resolved issues aside, do not serve it again and again, it will not get better. Instead of this just resolve it one time and then it should be ok for both, but resolve it for both parties.

    I do not agree to some of your points regarding the topic sex. Point a) I totally disagree with you. Sometimes it should be spontaneous. If you just make every time an “appointment” than it is kind of boring.

    Point c) this is sometimes not true. I would recommand trying something new (some new “techniques”) or just ask what she wants. Sometimes women are shy – even after they have been married a long time ago – when when it comes to expressing what they would like to try.

    Flavia your looking awesome & hot. Vince congrats you are a lucky man.

    @Sean: total agree with you 🙂 but this is a lesson you have to learn.

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    • Don't worry Muckel.. we won't be scheduling appointments on our honeymoon.

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  33. The thing that got me was the bit about the grass not being greener. I must admit i like to look at other woman, we all do right! I will start to water my grass a lot more .
    Good luck.

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  34. Just to add a little something from an older guy….sex is more in the brain for women and the "eyes" for men, so be sure to turn your women on by finding what makes her "tick". Best thing I suggest is listen long enough to find out. 😉

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    • Which is why erotic literature for women are books with text, and for men it's mainly pictures (and some beer ads).

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  35. Vince,
    It's Fernando Rosas. I never found out what were the steps to take in order to receive MYM for free. Please contact me in regards to that. I am extremely excited about starting that program.

    Thank you,
    Sincerely,
    Fernando Rosas

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      • I never found out what were the steps to take in order to receive MYM for free. Is it free for the winners? I am willing to pay for this program, it's just that I had the idea that I had won the program.

        Thanks 🙂 No bad feelings. Honestly you have helped me a lot with NNMB
        Fernando

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  36. Hey Vince and Flavia, very cool post! I'm impressed. I'm in a great serious relationship but its nice to get reminders of things we forget about pretty easily sometimes. Thanks for sharing your experience, its good to hear a more personal side from you. Shows you're a real person and that you care, not just some guy out for money. Looking forward to your future blogs!

    Wade Phelps

    P.S. I just purchased your NNMB program and everything looks great so far. Can't wait to get started! Thanks again!

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  37. Hey Vince and Flavia,

    Great advice…THANKS! I personally liked the part about conversation and conflict resolution. My girlfriend Tenissa and I don’t fight alot because we are so open towards one another, we are always talking and resolving any issues as they happen, instead of it building up and exploding in one big fight.

    Also don’t keep any secrets… she is not a spy, she is your girlfriend.

    I have no doubt that both of you are going to look fantastic on your wedding day!

    Kind regards

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  38. Good stuff, Vince, thanks for sharing. I totally agree, building your marriage on Biblical principles which are also learned/applied through marriage workshops are the best ever results. We have been married just over a year and I am only early 20's. I get a lot of people look extremely surprised when they hear that we had pre-marital counselling. 'but don't you get counselling if you're about to get divorced' is the usual answer. I can't believe that people just don't think to prepare themselves for marriage. It just makes sense to prepare yourself for such a big committment! Thus, we have a great marriage and it keeps getting better. God bless you.

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  39. Um – here is the actual BIBLE QUOTE you should have put up (it is not 'cleave until his life' but CLEAVE UNTO HIS WIFE!!

    Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. – Genesis 2:24 (It's a lot easier when you have an electronic Bible like E-Sword or such like.)

    Thanks for posting these tips Vince!

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  40. awesome blog, vince! we're planning to take our relationship to the next level and a lot of what you said are true true true!

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  41. Vince – this is very exellent material here – I appreciate your sound advise. I've been married now for almost 25 years and it's been hard at times but many of these principles you discussed have kept us together for all these years. My favorite principle you list above is probably "Communication 101" – very good! Actually all of this is great stuff! Thanks!

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  42. Wow Vinny, I am impressed. It sounds like you guys have an awesome start to what marriage is about.
    I'm really excited for you guys, Thank you very much for sharing and putting this out there. Also some of those reminders kinda kicked my butt…lol so thanks:) to you And Flavia

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  43. I use that Genesis 2:24 passage all the time when talking to young people about relationships, etc.

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