Marriage and parenting require modeling listening skills. When your partner speaks, do you listen, interrupt, or walk away? What do your children see? Look inside to find out what one successful couple did.

Ed and Marilyn, married over 25 years, meet my husband, Jim, and me at a fancy restaurant every year for a holiday dinner. Our conversations flow easily as we play catch-up. We discuss the events of the past year, our children, and movies each other must see.

At our last dinner I asked, “What is the bond that keeps you together?” Ed looked down, took a bite of herbed chicken and said, “We worked in a hospital running therapy groups before we fell in love. We already knew the importance of communication.”

Marilyn reminded Ed about something he told her before they married. Ed had confided that whenever his mother brought up problems, his father left the room.

Marilyn told Ed, “If you ever do that to me, “I’ll go further and stay longer.” Ed knew exactly what she meant.

Marilyn smiled, “Ed has never walked away.”

Ed added, “We solve our problems together.”

Listening well takes love, patience and respect. Below are 3 listening tips to show respect, increase patience, and show love for each other.

1st Marriage Listening Tip:

See Things from Your Partner’s Perspective – You don’t need to argue. You don’t need to agree either. You do need to know your spouse’s viewpoint by listening well. This takes patience because you’ll be putting a stop to thinking about other things while your partner is talking.

Your gift: Your partner will appreciate you and feel respected. Your children will realize not everyone has the same viewpoint.

2nd Marriage Listening Tip:

Repeat What Your Spouse Says In Your Own Words – You’ll need to develop a listening ear. To do this you’ll have to focus on your partner’s words. You might have to struggle to pay attention.
The next step is to repeat what your partner just said. If you get it wrong, ask your mate to repeat it and try again.

Your gift: You won’t be walking away. Your partner will know you care. Your children will witness your listening skill.

3rd Marriage Listening Tip:

Ask Your Partner Questions to Show Interest – Asking your partner questions doesn’t mean cross-examining. It does mean showing genuine interest in your partner’s thoughts.

Giving your spouse the attention that good questions offer, will increase the bond between you. Why? Everyone wants attention. Everyone wants to be heard.

Your gift: With your questions you’ll make your partner feel important. Don’t be surprised if your children begin to model this skill from your example.

Conclusion for Modeling a Loving Marriage and Becoming Parents in Love:

The above story about Ed and Marilyn is an excerpt from my eBook, Parents in Love – 121 Dating Ideas.

Ed and Marilyn learned how not to communicate from Ed’s father. They modeled how to listen for themselves and their children. Ed and Marilyn are still deeply in love.

Your efforts to listen will give your partner, you, and your children priceless gifts that bond you together.

Remember to see things from your partner’s viewpoint. Repeat what your spouse says in your own words. Ask your partner questions to show your interest. If you do you’ll be respected, your children will learn to communicate, and your spouse will feel close to you. Listening well is a great way to give, model, and receive love.

Author's Bio: 

Jean Tracy, MSS shares stories, tips, and the secret formula all lovers need in her eBook, Parents in Love.” With 121 low to no-cost dating ideas and 89 dating coupons, you can laugh, play, and cherish each other forever. Find out more at