Love and Respect

Nationally known expert on marriage says the divorce rate in the United States would drop dramatically if couples learned two key ingredients.

Ray and Dianne Cox of Fresno have been married to each other for eleven years, they've both been divorced, but vow this time around it's for keeps. They claim they've never had a fight.

Ray Cox: "We always discuss it very civilly and when we're done we do what she wants. Ha ha ha, that's not true."

What "is" true is Ray and Dianne have learned to love and respect each other.

Dianne Cox: "If you talk in the respect language their self esteem just really comes up and they brighten up it explains so much that I was able to start using it with Ray and with my children too. I have two boys."

The Cox's revelation came from the book 'Love and Respect' by author and Counselor Dr. Emerson Eggerichs, Eggerichs is in Fresno this week to teach a conference and says the key to a great marriage goes beyond just simple love.

Dr. Emerson Eggerichs: Dr. Emerson Eggerichs: "I went deeper with that and realized that women tend to go toward the love side and men tend to go toward the respect side, and I saw a connection, that when a wife feels unloved she tends to negatively react, you're stepping on her air hose, she needs that love like she needs air to breathe. So too a husband needs respect like he needs air to breathe."

Eggerichs book is just one of many marriage education resources available across Fresno County to strengthen marriages.

Ron McLain, the founder of Fresno County Healthy Marriages Coalition, says the more resources couples can get their hands on the healthier their families will be.

Ron McLain: "We're just at the place at the tipping point where we believe there's going to be a huge impact in Fresno County through couples using healthy marriage skills."

McLain says he isn't sure if its love and respect, marriage education as a whole or something else but the number of divorces in Fresno County dropped last year from 3700 to 3000.

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