Marriage education helped David and Maria Crockett learn to nurture a close relationship in which they regularly show each other appreciations. The experience led Maria to begin teaching PAIRS classes to help other southern California couples take their relationships to a new level of happiness and fulfillment.
Marriage Education is touching the lives of couples, families and children across the country. “I Am ME” profiles individuals and couples teaching relationship and marriage education classes in their local communities.
David and Maria Crockett married in 2008 and publicly renewed their vows on 10/10/10. Maria was born in Mexico, living there until moving to Fort Worth, Texas at the age of 14. She and her husband today live in Laguna Beach, California, where Maria serves as Program Director for the Relationship Research Foundation. Previously, she was director of business development for the Aaronson Law Firm. After first attending a PAIRS marriage education program sponsored by the California Healthy Marriages Coalition, Maria was touched by the deep emotional bonding and acceptance she felt and saw among other participants. She began teaching classes last year and has become a passionate advocate for the benefits of relationship skills training.
1.What led you to teach marriage education?
Marriage education works. Couples learn skills that are critically important to marriage. I wanted to be part of that. One story that particularly touched me is about a couple in a class who were struggling with their relationship after 33 year of marriage. Very quickly, they began seeing how the skills helped them better communicate and understand each other. The couple’s positive experience also helped others, including a young woman who had been considering abortion. After seeing how much the class helped this couple, she chose to keep her baby and also participate to work on the relationship with her boyfriend.
2. How have the challenges faced by couples changed?
From many things that I see, our culture today does not value marriage
nearly as highly as it once did. This results in harm to all. Many men
and women live together, but they are not married. Also, many men
and women having trouble do not want to take the time to try to work things out. Instead, they quickly head for the divorce court.
3. How has being an instructor affected your marriage?
In my marriage, this work has helped me nurture and sustain a closer relationship with my husband. When things become heated, instead of escalating or withdrawing, we rely on our marriage education skills to know when it’s best to call a Time-Out and focus on what is best for our marriage. The training also helped us create a relationship in which we regularly show appreciations, a must for both of us.
4. What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I enjoy sharing meals at the dinner table with the television off and doing the Daily Temperature Reading, which we call DTRing. I also love long walks around Laguna Beach and working out at the gym together.
5. What qualities would you most want others to admire in you?
I would like to inspire others through my efforts to love all people and to place their marriage as their top priority. Also, I would like for them to admire my patience and faith when things do not go as I wish.
Relationship Research Foundation, Inc.
1400 Bristol Street North, Suite 100
Newport Beach, CA 92660
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