“No one should come between you and your spouse. They should come alongside you but not between you.” —Ashley McIlwain


When our son was 4 months old Tony’s dad took our little family out for lunch. Everything was going well until he offered our baby some of his Coca-Cola ®. As Alisa’s eyes were about to pop out of their sockets and Tony stammered with the right words to speak, we saw the potential for tension and conflict across our families.

There are stages and layers of relational tension with in-laws. It begins at “I do” as you leave your birth family and cleave to your spouse, but as holiday logistics are planned, children are raised, finances are handled, and parents require more care the intricacies are only compounded.


It may sound backwards at first, but the data is clear — couples who have defined, shared boundaries regarding interactions with people of the opposite sex have fewer trust issues than those who don’t.

Think of it like installing a fence around the backyard before letting young kids out to play. The fence sets a perimeter that both keeps out unwanted dangers while allowing kids the freedom to know what space is safe for unrestricted fun.

DS 090: How Do I Get My Husband to Wear His Wedding Ring?

The wedding ring is a circle which has no beginning or end and is therefore a symbol of infinity. It is endless, eternal, just the way love should be. And yet what happens when your spouse decides not to wear theirs.

Submit your question to dailysteps@oneextraordinarymarriage.com or call 858-883-8842 to leave a voice message.


“Never trust a girl who doesn’t fart, you don’t know what else she’s holding back from you.” — Anonymous


We know that even reading about this topic makes some people feel uncomfortable. And if you and your spouse feel exactly the same way about your bodily functions you don’t need to read on.

However, in just about every marriage there’s one spouse who feels more private about certain functions than their spouse, and if left unresolved, this can result in significant loss of intimacy.