Picture of Dr. Linda Algazi, Ph.D


ALERT: Not recognizing your partner’s efforts and concentrating only on what he/she does wrong, can “bankrupt” your marriage.

The final message on the TV screen in front of my seat on a jet Blue flight, right before take off was, “Thank you for being such a good reader.” Wow! Everyone around me was smiling. What a concept… imagine… an airline thanking you for reading their propaganda!

A lesson from Jet Blue’s PR department: Catch someone doing something right and compliment him/her for it. It will make them feel good and it’s also good for the airline.

Try it with your spouse. Catch him/her doing something right and it will also be good for your marriage. Think of your compliment as a “deposit” that’s even more important than money.

When inevitable marital frustration take over, it’s helpful to have your emotional “bank account” rich in “deposits.” Then you can make “withdrawals” to help get through the hard times. This “bank account” can help insulate you from “emotional bankruptcy” and the threat of divorce.


Given that sex is one of the nicer things to do in this world, people who are not indulging usually have a reason. What’s yours? What would your spouse say? Good sex and intimacy are wonderful “deposits!”

So is playing or working on a mutual project. Identify what is it that you and your spouse like to do together and get going. (But do avoid building a new house or a major re-model unless your emotional “bank account is over-flowing!)

Look at old pictures from happy times. Make dates with people you both enjoy. Take a class together. Learn French. Plan a trip. Walk the dog together. Talk with each other.

Join a gym and commit to a mutually beneficial exercise program. Learn a new sport. Play ping-pong. Take up chess or bridge. Organize a couples movie group or book discussion group. Join a gourmet group. Volunteer together for charity or to help in the next election effort.

Buy tickets to a series of concerts or shows. Invite another couple to join you for the whole series.

Plan a surprise that you know would tickle your spouse.

Dr. Linda says: Hang tough! With lots of “deposits,” hard times are easier to survive.

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