Men, women and relationships! Readers’ Ideas to Make It Work – Faith & You by Terry Pluto

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Last week I wrote a Faith & You column about what women expect from men – or at least some ideas from my wife for 44 years.

It was published in The Plain Dealer under the title: WATCH ME. LISTEN TO ME. LOVE ME. These were things that Roberta liked, who is also my best friend.

I asked for comments on the column and how relationships work on my Facebook page. But first, here are a few things that I consider important:

1. Get to know not only the person before you get married, but also the person’s family – and part of family history. Like it or not, these people will be a part of your life.

2. Get to know how the person handles money. My mother loved to pass. My father didn’t. This has led to some fierce arguments. They married quickly when World War II broke out. They didn’t know each other well and their relationship was difficult.

3. Communication, Money, and Sex: Open, honest, and thorough communication can help with the other two. Otherwise, it will look like a thousand year war.

4. Never, ever criticize your spouse or even a good friend in front of others. No negative insults. Never make fun of them in a humiliating way, even if they seem to laugh at them.

5. While Roberta and I believed in God before our marriage, it wasn’t until about 20 years later that our faith grew to the point where we truly prayed together and put God in the middle of our relationship. It is important to have an agreement on faith / religion before you get married.

Often two in a boat are better than one. Photo by Terry Pluto /


Debbie: “When people ask me the secret to our 43-year-old happy marriage, my answer is: always ask yourself, ‘Will my words bring out the best in my husband?’ Don’t speak until the answer is yes. Sometimes those are words of encouragement, sometimes it’s humor, sometimes a little admonition. But either way, “will my words bring out the better of him? “

Marie Lou: “Communicate with men: be brief, be respectful. Be honest.”

Betty: “Whenever something needs to be done… or decided or discussed… don’t plan on going to MID-TRIP and giving your spouse 50% of what’s needed. Instead, do what we call the 51% approach: each of us should always be prepared to do whatever needs to be done in ADDITION which is FIFTY-ONE percent !. My husband and I have been married for 68 years. “

Jeanne: “Listen! Don’t try to fix it, don’t share your experience, don’t think about what you’re going to say.

Nancy: “Our lives together improved so much when we realized that even though we have so much in common … our brains work completely differently. Emotionally, we are not wired the same. So we have to navigate smoothly through it. Communication.

Jennifer: “When it comes to relationships, I think trust / honesty / transparency are essential … to speak the truth with love, kindness and respect – and to be able to admit and apologize when you have. wrong … wronged. Humility is also essential. And finally, a sense of humor makes it easy to get tough.

Suzanne: “I always add please and thank you.”


Being alone on a beach can feel far from everything and everyone. It is a good place to reflect. Photo by Terry Pluto /


Scott: “No games. Honesty. The confidence and openness to talk about anything and get honest feedback. I am extremely lucky because my wife is smart, determined and a woman who is also very beautiful. knock, but we care enough to talk about it. “

Stéphane: “She is a woman who will not always agree with me and in fact challenge me to think beyond my point of view. She is a woman whose love for me and others makes me want to be a better man and love her and others more. She’s a woman who is smart and competent and doesn’t need to have me in her life to make it complete, but wants me in her life.

Todd: “To make sure you are also under the yoke. Make sure you both know Christ as your personal Savior. Be together in church and make sure you communicate openly and trust each other.

William: “Just make sure every day before you go to bed she knows you love her. Touch her hand. Look her in the eye, no matter how upset you are … Women and men must know that they are cared for and that they can depend on each other.

Robert: “After my stroke, my wife became my beacon, guiding me through all the different therapy sessions. Almost normal after five months, I still lean on my wife.

David: “An equal partnership – no one is more important than the other – no problem is too small or too big if you solve it together.”

Thierry: “I had to join the army and travel to Panama to meet a girl from Virginia. She was everything I could have dreamed of: strong, compassionate, loving and a great mother. Her greatest attribute is having the patience and love to stick with my cranky butt for 38 years.

Excited: “51 years of marriage. All you need to communicate to your wife is that between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Sunday you will be watching the Browns game.


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