This chapter begins with the premise that healthy marriages have two people who are emotionally intelligent. By this, the authors mean that each person in the marriage stores important information about their spouse: they remember important history, know who their spouse’s friends are, their spouse’s fears, likes, dislikes, anxieties, quirks, joys, passions. The authors call this having a detailed “love map”.
The authors cite one of the major causes of marital divorce is actually the birth of the first child. “Sixty-seven percent of couples in our newlywed study underwent a precipitous drop in marital satisfaction the first time they became parents. But the remaining 33 percent did not experience this drop – in fact, about half of them saw their marriage improve……What separated these two groups? You guessed it: The couples whose marriages thrived after the birth had detailed love maps from the get-go….”
This chapter contains a love map questionnaire to complete about your spouse and then three separate exercises to do with your spouse: the “ Love Map 20 Questions Game”, the “Make Your Own Love Maps”, and “Who Am I?”
In the next chapter, the authors talk about how to use this information in order to show your fondness and admiration for your spouse.