We are delighted to announce the publication of our fourth book, That Which Doesn’t Kill Us: How One Couple Became Stronger at the Broken Places. It is unlike any of our previous books. It is a joint memoir, covering a ten-year period of time in which we experienced a series of challenges that threatened and nearly destroyed our marriage.
The book provides a vivid glimpse into the struggles we endured and how they ultimately transformed our relationship and our lives. It reads like a compelling novel, and it contains some very powerful teachings that apply to nearly all committed partnerships.
In September, we will have been together for fifty years, forty-six of them married. We were kids (twenty-one) when we moved in together. Not surprisingly, we went through some very rough times, particularly in the early days. We beat the odds, but not without going through a fair amount of struggle and suffering. Through a combination of hard work, determination, good help, and some good luck, we managed to avoid the separation and divorce statistics, but we did have a couple of very close calls.
We learned a few things along the way that served to keep our family together, and we now share what we learned with others. This is something neither of us ever imagined we would be doing when we first met in 1968.
Looking back over the difficult years, it seems like a miracle that we managed to resuscitate what, at times, was very nearly a mortally-wounded relationship. In retrospect, we both recognize that it was more than good fortune that enabled us to come through our ordeals without losing ourselves, or our marriage.
The biggest factor in the process was that we both, even during the most painful times, were willing to learn from our experiences. We put corrections in place that served to help us stay on track, and that helped us get back on track when we lost our way. We became more able to recognize our mistakes and the behaviors that contributed to the breakdowns that occurred between us. This enabled each of us to assume a higher level of responsibility. It also gave us the power to influence our relationship for the better. We learned that getting help when your relationship is in serious trouble not a sign of weakness or failure, but a sign of intelligence.