If you have read any of my past relationship posts, you may think I am going against my own advice. I recently shared the three times to consider couples therapy, and on my blog and social media profiles, I regularly share how my wife and I rarely watch TV. But I think I have to agree with a recent survey that lists watching TV with your spouse as a good way to keep your relationship strong.
The survey, which I read about in this Your Tango article, says the following:
“Couples who watch movies about relationships together are half as likely to split up in three years as couples that do not.“
My wife and I average about five hours of TV per week, except during football season. Maybe we need to watch more. As I read the article and learned of the survey results, I was thinking there had to be more — that there had to be a catch. And yes, there was. So, before you decide to tell your spouse being a couch potato is actually the best thing for your relationship, you need to hear the catch.
The catch is you have to talk about what you watched when the show ends. The study says talking about the relationships on screen is very similar to going through therapy. So, is it really the act of watching TV or the communication? Good communication is one of the best things for your relationship, but what you watch gives you something more to talk about than your kids and work. I know we are not the only couple who has that problem.
I encourage you to test the study results. Spend a little more time watching TV with your significant other, and then talking when the show or movie ends.
To help you I’ve listed five shows and movies for you to watch — a few of these make up the TV time my wife and I have together.
Scandal on ABC
Scandal happens to be the one show that is in our calendars. Friday night is our date night out on the town, and Thursday night is our date night at home on the couch. One thing we don’t do much of with Scandal is talk — my wife has banned me from speaking during the show. Maybe if I show her the study results, I just might be able to talk!
The Cosby Show reruns
While Scandal lives up to its name 110 percent, The Cosby Show is just the opposite. It’s wholesome, family-oriented, and free of any scandal. My wife and I grew up on The Cosby Show, and although we have only caught a rerun every once in a blue moon, we know exactly what Cosby is about, and I can see great conversation centered around it plus plenty of good laughs.
A movie about couples on a retreat is the perfect film to spur conversation between a couple. The couples in the movie have a variety of relationship types and challenges — from dealing with intimacy and children, to considering divorce — making the chance for being able to relate pretty high. Plenty of after-the-credits conversation fodder to go around.
The Best Man Holiday
Unfortunately I missed this movie when it was in the theaters, but I’m looking forward to watching it on DVD and making it an at-home date night with my wife. If it is anything like the first Best Man movie, it will definitely give you something to talk about.
Grey’s Anatomy on ABC
Grey’s is my wife’s pre-date show. I am typically getting the kids in the bed while it’s on, so the opportunities to watch it and discuss it later are somewhat limited, but it gets her ready for Scandal! This is another show that features many relationship challenges and is sure to provide plenty of relationship topics for you to talk about.
Remember, the study revealed the post-show communication adds value to your relationship, so no matter what shows you choose to watch, make sure to make time to chat.
What is one of your favorite shows to watch as a couple?
More on relationships from Jackie: