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Married people tend to have healthier lifestyles, live longer, have more satisfying sexual relationships

Whilst Australia has seen a declining rate of marriage since 1947 – similar to other western nations – today more than 70% of women will marry in their lifetime, 1 in 5 marrying at least twice, with 4 in 5 couples living together before marriage (an increase from less than 1 in 5 in 1975). Lasting an average of 12 years, 1 in 3 of these relationships will end in divorce, most occurring in their primary producing years, around 45 for men and 43 for women in 2016 (ABS, 2016).

Marriage, however, still confers certain unique benefits. Based on a wealth of academic research, married people tend to have healthier lifestyles, live longer, have more satisfying sexual relationships, have more economic assets, and have children that tend to do better academically and emotionally. When relationships go right, couples who stay together tend to be happier, healthier and ultimately wealthier (Waite & Gallagher 2000).

Conversely, when relationships go wrong, couple distress is strongly linked to problems with individual health and well-being (Lebow et al 2012).

The children of couples who stay together – and therefore have both parents present in the house – are more likely to thrive in their well-being and education (McLanahan et al 2013).

References:

  • Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) – Marriage and divorces, Australia 2016.
  • Waite, L., & Gallagher, M. 2000: The case for marriage. New York: Doubleday.

Material used with permission of PREPARE/ENRICH.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

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When life hands you lemons… Managing the unexpected occurrences in relationships! ONLY 3 DAYS TO GO!

MAREAA Joint National and Victorian State Conference, Cardinal Knox Centre, East Melbourne

6 – 9 pm Friday, August 2 and
9 – 5 pm Saturday, August 3, 2019

Check out the following Video from Toni Powell. When Toni Powell’s husband asked her to marry him, she learned an important lesson…

https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=2186966888194877

Toni is an author, TEDx speaker, mentor, mother, relationship buff, recovering worrywart, social entrepreneur and wife…Toni is a passionate researcher and communicator about the wisdom behind enduring relationships, what makes people tick and the how-to of wellbeing and happiness.

Well regarded as both a thought leader and an entertaining speaker frequently interviewed on ABC radio on programs such as ‘Life Matters’ and ‘Focus’. Toni was guest lecturer at The Positive Education Institute’s renowned ‘Insight Series’, the opening Keynote at Positive Schools Conference and is a much loved regular at Happiness & Its Causes Conference.

Great speakers on topics such as Internal Family Systems, Grief and Loss and Stress and Changes in couples over the decades.

Know anyone who should attend… Registration is still available. Click here to register.

https://mareaa.asn.au/join-now/mareaa-joint-national-and-victorian-state-conference-2019/

Register Now

Conference Fees:
MAREAA Members $159 per person
(Including Friday supper and Saturday morning & afternoon tea, lunch and coffee/tea throughout and all handout materials).
Friday only including supper $60
Saturday only including lunch $140

Non-MAREAA Members $199 per person
(Including Friday supper and Saturday morning & afternoon tea, lunch and coffee/tea throughout and all handout materials).
Friday only including supper $75
Saturday only including lunch $170

Student/Unemployed/Concession $145 per person

*Special – Annual Membership $60.00 per person

Need help or assistance to register? Email us: admin@mareaa.asn.au,
or Shane Smith 0414993347

Conference Program

August 2, 2019
6:00 pm Registration
6:30 pm Welcome to Country
6:45 pm Toni Powell
7:50 pm Supper
9:00 pm Close of Evening

August 3, 2019
8:00 – 9:00 am Registration
9:00 am Opening
9:30 am ‘Internal Family Systems’ – Dr. Danielle Williamson & David Eckle –
11:00 am Morning Tea
11:30 am ‘Intimacy from the Inside Out’ – Dr. Danielle Williamson & David Eckle –
1:00 pm Lunch
2:00 pm Panel Discussion – Peter Norden, Leonie Nolan, Amanda Smith-
2:45 pm Afternoon Tea
3:15 pm. Amanda Lambros – The Grief Recovery Method
4:45 pm Feedback
5:00 pm MAREAA AGM
Wine and cheese

Looking forward to seeing you there!

Regards,
Shane Smith
MAREAA President

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MAREAA National Conference 2-3 August 2019, special day rate available: When life hands you lemons… Managing unexpected occurrences in relationships

Topics ranging from Wellbeing and Happiness, Internal Family Systems and Grief and Loss and Stress, don’t miss out on yet another quality MAREAA event.

When life hands you lemons… Managing the unexpected occurrences in relationships!

$159 Members
[Friday only $60; Saturday $140]
$199 Non-Members 
[Friday only $75; Saturday $170]
$60 Annual Membership Special

Great speakers on topics such as Internal Family Systems, Grief and Loss and Stress and Changes in couples over the decades.

Conference Program

TONI POWELL, Speaker & Educator

Toni is an author, TEDx speaker, mentor, mother, relationship buff, recovering worrywart, social entrepreneur and wife…Toni is a passionate researcher and communicator about the wisdom behind enduring relationships, what makes people tick and the how-to of wellbeing and happiness.

Well regarded as both a thought leader and an entertaining speaker frequently interviewed on ABC radio on programs such as ‘Life Matters’ and ‘Focus’. Toni was guest lecturer at The Positive Education Institute’s renowned ‘Insight Series’, the opening Keynote at Positive Schools Conference and is a much loved regular at Happiness & Its Causes Conference.

DR. DANIELLE WILLIAMSON

A registered clinical psychologist, an approved supervisor and lecturer at Swinburne University in both the Counselling & Clinical psychology programs. She has a particular interest in treating trauma-related issues in adults, and has co-founded the Women’s Trauma Recovery Program in partnership with David Eckel.

Danielle works in private practice at Parkside Psychology, seeing adolescents, adults & couples with a wide range of presenting issues. Internal Family Systems therapy resonates for Danielle as it provides a way to listen deeply and be present with her own parts, and the parts and Self of others. It’s exciting to share this approach and explore the different applications for people across therapy and non-therapy settings.

DAVID ECKLE

Mr. David Eckel is an accredited mental health social worker with over 13 years experience counselling adults in community health, specializing in the areas of PTSD & complex trauma, GLBTIQ mental health and alcohol & other drugs. David has worked in counselling, project work and clinical supervision roles at IPC Health, VIC AIDS Council and Access Health and Community.

He is passionate about trauma treatment and is an EMDR practitioner, Level One and Two trained Internal Family Systems Therapist. David is also a trained creative arts therapist and experienced in supervision and training, having previously taught at the Australian College of Applied Psychology (ACAP).

AMANDA LAMBROS

Director of The Grief Recovery Institute (AUS/NZ) – The only evidence-based program in the world which directly addresses grief and loss and helps grievers move beyond the pain caused by loss.

Amanda is an Author, TEDx Speaker, Relationship Educator and Clinical Supervisor. She’s also a wife to her complete opposite and a mother to two young boys who have more energy than the sun! She is beyond passionate and biased on the topics of relationships, Mental Health and Grief and Loss.

Register Now

Conference Fees:
(Including Friday dinner and Saturday morning & afternoon tea, lunch and coffee/tea throughout and all handout materials).
MAREAA Members $159.00 per person
Friday only including supper $60
Saturday only including lunch $140

Non-MAREAA Member $199.00 per person
Friday only including supper $75
Saturday only including lunch $170

Student/Unemployed/Concession $145 per person

*Special – Annual Membership $60.00 per person

Registration is available now. Click here to register for this exciting educators’ conference.

Register Now

MAREAA National AGM 2019

The MAREAA National Committee would like to invite all current, past and potential members and supporters to the Marriage and Relationship Educators’ Association of Australia 25th Annual General Meeting, to be held on Saturday August 3 2019, 5.00pm at the Cardinal Knox Centre, 383 Albert Street (cnr Lansdowne Street), East Melbourne, VIC 3002

Be part of a national organisation dedicated to the advancement of Marriage and Relationship Education throughout Australia. 

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Leonie Nolan: Couple counsellor, relationship educator, director PREPARE/ENRICH…. see her at the Marriage and Relationship Educators National Conference (MARENC) 2019, East Melbourne, August 2-3, 2019

Leonie Nolan cites her finest achievement as a 43 year old marriage that has been 90% fabulous with about 10% a bit Crazy.

Leonie is married to Michael. They have three adult children, two are married and five beautiful grandchildren.

When Leonie is not travelling to visit her family, or working with Michael on their farm, she is engaged in working with couples at Catholic Care Melbourne as a FOCCUS Facilitator. She has been doing this for the last ten years.

For the last sixteen years Leonie has also worked at Open Doors Counselling in Ringwood, Melbourne. Here she works with clients who are struggling to comes to terms with the Grief around Pregnancy Loss as well as Relationship Issues.

Leonie came to Counselling after being in the Aged Care Industry for many years owning and managing her Aged Care Facility.

Leonie thoroughly enjoys working with couples and loves those “Light Bulb” moments when they discover new insights about their relationship.

Leonie’s academic achievements include a Graduate Diploma in Counselling from Victoria University and a Batchelor of Economics from Monash University.

She endeavours to stay abreast of the latest developments in Relationship Counselling.

Hosted by the MAREAA Victorian State Committee and National Committee we are thrilled to have Danielle join our wonderful line up of great topics and sensational speakers.

Marriage and Relationship Educators National Conference (MARENC) 2019, to be held at the Cardinal Knox Centre, East Melbourne, August 2-3 2019.

With topics ranging from Wellbeing and Happiness, Internal Family Systems and Grief and Loss and Stress, the 2019 MARENC promises to bring new thinking and ideas for professional development for both professional and voluntary practitioners interested in the field of marriage, relationship and family education.
$159 Members
$199 Non-Members

$60 Annual membership special

Great speakers on topics such as Internal Family Systems, Grief and Loss and Stress and Changes in couples over the decades.

Registration is available now. Click here to register for this exciting educators’ conference.

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Mandi Smith: Couple Counsellor, Relationship Educator, Director PREPARE/ENRICH…. see her at the Marriage and Relationship Educators National Conference (MARENC) 2019, East Melbourne, August 2-3, 2019

Mandi Smith is a relationship counsellor specialising in work with couples in the areas of relationship education, relationship enrichment and counselling. Strong relationships between couples brings many benefits to families and society in general. Mandi believes all relationships are a work in progress and have untapped potential, we just need to help them along the way.

Hosted by the MAREAA Victorian State Committee and National Committee we are thrilled to have Mandi join our wonderful line up of great topics and sensational speakers.

Marriage and Relationship Educators National Conference (MARENC) 2019, to be held at the Cardinal Knox Centre, East Melbourne, August 2-3 2019.

Hosted by the MAREAA Victorian State Committee and National Committee we are thrilled to have Danielle join our wonderful line up of great topics and sensational speakers.

Marriage and Relationship Educators National Conference (MARENC) 2019, to be held at the Cardinal Knox Centre, East Melbourne, August 2-3 2019.

With topics ranging from Wellbeing and Happiness, Internal Family Systems and Grief and Loss and Stress, the 2019 MARENC promises to bring new thinking and ideas for professional development for both professional and voluntary practitioners interested in the field of marriage, relationship and family education.

$159 Members
$199 Non-Members

$60 Special Annual Membership

Great speakers on topics such as Internal Family Systems, Grief and Loss and Stress and Changes in couples over the decades.

Registration is available now. Click here to register for this exciting educators’ conference.

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5 small ways to celebrate your relationship today – bonus: Discover the hidden treasures of your relationship

Here are five small ways to celebrate your relationship today (or any day of the year), because your relationship is worth a little extra effort today.

Bonus: 6. Discover the hidden treasures of your relationship: People are always growing and relationships are constantly changing. Almost all relationships begin in a honeymoon phase, where couples see their relationship through rose-colored glasses, but most do not remain there. The problem is that, much like a river, a relationship may look relatively stable, but a deeper examination reveals undercurrents that change from moment to moment.

Take some time today to explore your relationship, the ups and the downs, the strengths and the growth areas.

Couple Checkup is a fun, easy way to provide insights into your relationship which will generate deep and productive conversations that you may not otherwise have about your relationship. This will renew your understanding of one another, and it can help revive a relationship and increase intimacy. Take Couple Checkup today  and begin the journey of a stronger, healthier relationship.  And that’s really the best way to celebrate your relationship, right?

More tips at www.couplecheckup.com.au, tune in next week…

Material used with permission of PREPARE/ENRICH.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the new video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

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5 ways to celebrate your relationship: Really listen to each other

Here are five small ways to celebrate your relationship today (or any day of the year), because your relationship is worth a little extra effort today.

5.  Listen to each other: Active listening is the ability to let your partner know you understand what they have said by restating their message. Practice really listening to what your partner is saying. Best put by Jeff Daly, “Two monologues do not make a dialogue.”

Take some time today to explore your relationship, the ups and the downs, the strengths and the growth areas.

Couple Checkup is a fun, easy way to provide insights into your relationship which will generate deep and productive conversations that you may not otherwise have about your relationship. This will renew your understanding of one another, and it can help revive a relationship and increase intimacy. Take Couple Checkup today  and begin the journey of a stronger, healthier relationship.  And that’s really the best way to celebrate your relationship, right?

More tips at www.couplecheckup.com.au, tune in next week…

Material used with permission of PREPARE/ENRICH.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the new video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

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5 ways to celebrate your relationship: Share your gratitude

Here are five small ways to celebrate your relationship today (or any day of the year), because your relationship is worth a little extra effort today.

3.  Share your gratitude: Take a quick moment to share with your partner what you appreciate about them. Start with, “I appreciate you for…”

“Research shows that people who hear frequent appreciations feel better about themselves, produce more, and serve more.

Feeling appreciated is important to healthy relationships and work teams. It’s also important to one’s sense of being valued. Whenever you share an appreciation with another, their brain hears the appreciation and releases dopamine. Dopamine is a neurochemical that, when released, produces a feeling of pleasure. How many “dopamine shots” do you give your employees, colleagues, spouses, and children each day? May we begin to value not just being appreciated, but appreciating.” – Dr. Mark Richards, PREPARE/ENRICH Facilitator and Trainer.

Take some time today to explore your relationship, the ups and the downs, the strengths and the growth areas.

Material used with permission of PREPARE/ENRICH.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the new video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

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5 ways to celebrate your relationship: Leave a surprise note

Here are five small ways to celebrate your relationship today (or any day of the year), because your relationship is worth a little extra effort today.

2.  Leave a note: Leave a note on the bathroom mirror. Tuck a piece of paper with a thoughtful message in your partner’s coat pocket. Scribble a note down on the back of the electric bill and leave it next to the tea pot.

These notes don’t have to be long love letters, just a simple note to make your partner smile.

Take some time today to explore your relationship, the ups and the downs, the strengths and the growth areas.

Couple Checkup is a fun, easy way to provide insights into your relationship which will generate deep and productive conversations that you may not otherwise have about your relationship. This will renew your understanding of one another, and it can help revive a relationship and increase intimacy. Take Couple Checkup today  and begin the journey of a stronger, healthier relationship.  And that’s really the best way to celebrate your relationship, right?

Material used with permission of PREPARE/ENRICH.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the new video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

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Taking time to seek forgiveness can play a powerful role in healing and restoring your relationship

All couples eventually experience times of conflict, hurt, and letting each other down. Sometimes the offense is as minor as forgetting a date or failing to run an errand. For some couples, the offense might involve a major betrayal such as infidelity, addiction, or abuse. Either way, taking time to seek and grant forgiveness can play a powerful role in healing and restoring the relationship.

Forgiveness is the decision or choice to give up the right for vengeance, retribution, and negative thoughts toward an offender in order to be free from anger and resentment. This process promotes healing and restoration of inner peace, and it can allow reconciliation to take place in the relationship.

It is important to be clear about what forgiveness is not. Forgiveness is not forgetting, condoning or perpetuating injustice. Since it is sometimes unsafe or impossible, forgiveness does not always involve reconciliation. Forgiveness is not always quick; it is a process that can take time to unfold. Don’t rush your partner if they need to spend days or weeks working through the process of granting forgiveness.

Six Steps for Seeking Forgiveness:

  1. Admit what you did was wrong or hurtful.
  2. Try to understand/empathize with the pain you have caused.
  3. Take responsibility for your actions and make restitution if necessary.
  4. Assure your partner you will not do it again.
  5. Apologise and ask for forgiveness.
  6. Forgive yourself.

Six Steps for Granting Forgiveness next week…

Material used with permission of PREPARE/ENRICH.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the new video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

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Exploring family of origin for individuals who have grown up in extremely rigid and enmeshed families

Relationship education provides an opportunity to work with couples’ perceptions of their families of origin. In particular, it is worth exploring the possible impact of extreme, or unbalanced, family structures on how couples are likely to approach their own relationship.

A series of studies conducted at the University of Sydney have identified some key matters of concern. These studies have been conducted by postgraduate students in the School of Psychology under the supervision of Alan Craddock, a former Senior Lecturer in that School and also the former National Coordinator of PREPARE/ENRICH Australia. All of these studies used measures of family structure that were very closely related to the family of origin questions used in the PREPARE/ENRICH inventories.

The form of extreme family structure focused on in these studies involves enmeshment or extreme closeness. Highly enmeshed families may be typified by an extreme form of cohesiveness that undermines the development of personal autonomy and which results in a form of family bonding that represents an over-identification with the family.

There are two varieties of enmeshed families that occur quite frequently: Rigidly enmeshed and chaotically enmeshed.

Rigidly enmeshed families are excessively close and also have very highly structured rules, roles and routines. In contrast, chaotically enmeshed families, whilst also being excessively close, lack structure and tend to be random, unstable and chaotic.

The University of Sydney studies revealed three areas of personal adjustment that are strongly associated with rigidly enmeshed types of family of origin. These are all areas that may represent important vulnerabilities for couples, and therefore are worth noting.

(1) Relationship Attachment

In 1999, Natalie Nasr, Leah MacFadyen, Clint Marlborough, Rina Sarkis and Susan Scanlon examined the effect of childhood experiences of family of origin on adult relationship attachment among young Australian adults. One important and relevant feature of their findings was that rigid-enmeshment was a significant predictor of discomfort in adult relationships.

(2) Feelings of Shame and Sense of Parentification

In 2003, Margaret Walker studied the effect of childhood experiences of family of origin on young Australian adults’ reports of feeling a sense of personal shame and of being pressured to adopt parent-like roles in their childhood (parentification). She found that rigid-enmeshment, as a feature of family of origin, was a significant predictor of strong feelings of shame and a strong sense of being parentified during childhood.

(3) Perfectionism

In 2006, Wendy Church and Alexandra Sands investigated the relationship between features of family of origin and young Australian adults’ tendencies towards being perfectionistic. They found that family enmeshment and rigid, authoritarian forms of parenting were significant predictors of both functional (healthy) and dysfunctional (unhealthy) forms of perfectionism.

In summary, all of these studies support the view that, although family closeness and structure are generally regarded as positive in their effects, too much closeness (enmeshment) combined with too much structure (rigidity) may be damaging.

The damage identified in these studies may be apparent in couples taking a relational inventory or counselling. In particular, individuals who have grown up in extremely rigid and enmeshed families of origin may find it difficult to be comfortable in their own adult relationships and may be carrying a burden of emotional baggage with them that involves some or all of these components: A sense of shame, a strong pressure to perform perfectly and to inappropriately take on adult parent-like roles. This baggage appears to originate family of origin pressures that are associated with over-controlling and suffocating closeness. Facilitators and counsellors should be alert to these possibilities without assuming that the patterns fit all individuals who have grown up in rigid and enmeshed families.

Tune in for more tips and ideas next week.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the new video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

#PREPARE/ENRICH is a customised online assessment tool that identifies each couples unique strength and growth areas. Based on their assessment results, a facilitator provides feedback sessions, helping couples to discuss and understand their results while teaching them proven relationship skills.

For more information on PREPARE/ENRICH or to simply set up a couple on the tool, please contact: www.prepare-enrich.com.au or call today (02) 9520 4049 #prepareenrich #strongerrelationships

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The benefits of stable, loving relationships for men, women and children (and for society)

Research overwhelmingly points to the physical, psychological, emotional, social and financial benefits of stable, loving relationships for men, women and children (and our society in general).

Knowing these benefits, PREPARE/ENRICH believes and strongly advocates for relationship education across the life span to assist in the development and maintenance of healthy, committed, nurturing relationships in all their diversity.

Providing a highly valid and well researched assessment tool to assist couples explore their strength and growth areas, PREPARE/ENRICH has trained over 15,000 facilitators across Australia in the past 35 years who work with couples in all life stages to change the way they relate and how they handle conflict amongst others things irrespective of age, sexual orientation, cultural or religious background.

Tune in for more tips and ideas next week.

Marriage and Relationship Education is a learning opportunity, much like you would do in any other important life event. Check out the new video for couples on YouTube: https://youtu.be/xyuUl-JnIhM

Keep up with the latest from the MAREAA online:

Join us at www.mareaa.asn.au or sign up to our Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bRigGf

#PREPARE/ENRICH is a customised online assessment tool that identifies each couples unique strength and growth areas. Based on their assessment results, a facilitator provides feedback sessions, helping couples to discuss and understand their results while teaching them proven relationship skills.

For more information on PREPARE/ENRICH or to simply set up a couple on the tool, please contact: www.prepare-enrich.com.au or call today (02) 9520 4049 #prepareenrich #strongerrelationships