Shopping Cart
Your Cart is Empty
There was an error with PayPalClick here to try again
CelebrateThank you for your business!You should be receiving an order confirmation from Paypal shortly.Exit Shopping Cart

Professional Christian Counseling

                Emotionally Focused...Solution Driven Counseling

  Bulding Healthy Marriages and Strong Families


The Genesis 2:24 Cycle of Marital Intimacy

Revised 1/19/2016

A graphical representation, or road map if you will, has been included so that together we can walk through the cycle and unpack the many mysteries of marriage.

His Heart

Why He Must Commit Himself to Her

Revised 10/30/2015

This graphic represents a man’s desire to connect with a woman and signifies the culmination of his search for a suitable helper which must emanate from his heart—he must feel love for her and desire to devote himself to her. The arrow from his heart to hers represents the genuine love and caring that he must display in order to captivate his wife’s heart.

Even though studies have revealed that between 50% and 70% of the time women are the initiators of a romantic relationship, and do so through the use of subtle signals, Genesis 2:24 begins its focus however, not on this dating ritual but on the would-be-husband's heart, his acceptance of her and commitment to her.

Learn more about His Heart

Her Love Gauge

The Conversation She Monitors

Revised 11/29/2015

At this step in the cycle, the graphic of a gauge depicts how women consciously and subconsciously monitor various aspects of their relationships in order to determine how healthy their marriage is. A woman’s Love Gauge measures the frequency and the quality of her husband’s reassurances to her that she will not be neglected, rejected or abandoned by him. While also, the strength of his loving messages tell her how much he cares about her, which means for her that, he will protect her from harm and provide for her needs. These constitute the minimum standards that many women use as a guide for remaining in a relationship. Her Love Gauge monitors not only how well she perceives that she is cared for, but also monitors other more aesthetic qualities of relationship.

Because men are typically less verbal and less verbally articulate than women are, women have learned to use their Love Gauge to assess messages that come from his spoken but, mostly unspoken actions and words toward her. In order for her to have positive feelings for him, she must believe that they are in agreement about their relationship. That sense of harmony brings her emotional peace and contentment. Conversely, disagreements between the two of them then become a threat to her security and to her sense of well-being. When a husband is able to meet her minimum standards, this lays the foundation for a positive sentiment toward him which becomes important to the durability of their relationship. Her Love Gauge takes into consideration all of the qualities of his love towards her. While foundational qualities help her to remain in relationship with him, she desires the more aesthetic aspects of relationship which determines how full or empty her Love Tank is.

Verbal Intercourse

The Intimacy She Craves

Revised 11/30/2015

While being provided for and protected are important to her, these characteristics simply establish the foundation for the more aesthetic qualities of relationship that she hopes he will display that help her to feel strongly connected to him. Her minimum standards of relationship are not the same as what she hopes that the relationship can be. There is more to love than feeling secure in his provision and protection. It is becoming increasingly evident that many women believe they no longer need a husband to provide for them. Nowadays significant numbers of women are able to purchase security for themselves.[1] We live in an age where women have now surpassed the college enrollment of men and are beginning to assume key professional positions traditionally reserved for men.[2] It may not be long before a majority of women out-earn men making the reliance of male provision completely unnecessary. Furthermore homes and apartment buildings are being equipped with security systems and door-men that make having a husband solely for purposes of protection obsolete. As more and more women become able to provide these things for themselves, financial constraints are becoming less of a factor in keeping relationships intact. Before 1968 less than a quarter of women with children under the age of six worked outside of the home. By 2000, those numbers have jumped to about two-thirds.[3] Without the perceived need of a man to provide for her or protect her, many women have been freed to seek romantic relationships based solely on the aesthetic merits of relationship rather than leaning on a man for survival.[4]

Over and above basic security, the aesthetic qualities of couple dialogue and conversation are becoming increasingly important to the longevity of a relationship. While the aesthetic aspects of relationship are the goal, it is clear that some women will remain in a loveless relationship where the aesthetic aspects of relationship are missing in order to preserve security. Most women will only leave a loveless relationship when they believe that they can either find security somewhere else or provide it for themselves. Yet other women remain in abusive relationships which are both loveless and provide little to no security.

What women want are love-filled relationships where both foundational and aesthetic qualities of relationship merge to become the vehicle for transferring the love he has in his heart to hers. This becomes especially true when his love can be demonstrated through the use of metamessages. Women often say “a picture is worth a thousand words” and “actions speak louder than words.” Women are geared for protoconversation. And, the mechanics of metamessaging are the dynamics of communication that help her to develop a love addiction for him. When this happens, her heart opens to him and she develops the loving feelings that allow her to be physically intimate with him.

While a woman wants to know that she is deeply cared for, safe and secure, she also craves intimacy and needs to know that there is nothing kept secret that would separate her from knowing her partner‘s thoughts and his feelings toward her. Through communication, she reveals personal information about herself and wants to know personal information about him in order to feel emotionally connected. When a husband reveals his thoughts it builds trust and trust breeds security. Feeling secure thus means that she and he are close. Therefore honesty, openness, intimacy and security are interrelated. Furthermore, many women prefer to feel close to their husbands through nonverbal and nonsexual forms of intimacy, such as hugs, handholding, and walks together.

Her Heart

Her Love Addiction "United" Emotionally

Revised 10/30/2015

The heart graphic pictured here serves as a figurative symbol for how a woman feels about her relationship. Foundational to a woman’s heart is resting in the faith that her husband will provide for and protect her, thus helping her to feel emotionally secure and strongly supported by him. When her faith is returned to her with realized love from him―her love tank is filled. His loving actions are the fuel that drives her engine. For countless women however, their faith is not realized and turns to disappointment leading to depression. Even worse than feeling deprived of loving attention is receiving anger from him instead. It signifies his displeasure with her which not only erases faith that he cares for her, but results in anxiety rather than the peace and security she has hoped for. To highlight just how much a woman’s heart wants to believe in her husband, studies reveal that women depress at rates twice as much as men and suffer from anxiety four times as often thus illustrating how they are sticking out difficult situations.

On the contrary, women hope that their husbands will be sensitively aware of their feelings and will anticipate what causes stress for her and actively goes about the business of reassuring her through words and actions that everything will be fine. Women hope that husbands will mediate overwhelmingly negative feelings and will increase positive ones thus leading her heart to happiness. Because feelings are a major focus of a woman’s mind, happiness has to be one of its major goals. Not only does a woman want to feel safe, secure and happy, she wants to experience intimacy.

She wants to know her husband and to be fully known by him. She wants to share the secret parts of her heart with someone who will not judge her negatively but will accept her as she is. A woman finds most of these things through conversation. For many women it is their favorite activity and the way that they share themselves and feel loved. Quietness, ambivalence and coldness tell her that he is disinterested in her and signal that something is wrong with the relationship. The degree of communicative passion that a man expresses correlates directly to her level of enjoyment. The more interest he shows in what she has in her heart, the more thrilled she is and the more addicted she becomes to the love talk her husband shares with her.

Her Safety Valve

When She Doesn't Feel Loved

Revised 10/30/2015

Following the arrow to the next graphic represents a woman’s Safety Valve which is normally in the “off” position. Her Safety Valve performs a very important function designed to keep both her and her offspring safe. If she detects that he does not care about her or is trying to manipulate her into being sexual apart from a strong emotional connection, her safety valve becomes more resolute in remaining “off” thus thwarting his attempts to be sexual with her.

Only as a man is able to convince a woman that he is committed to her and to taking care of her as well as her children will subconscious thoughts trigger her Safety Valve to open thus allowing her to become sexual with him. Studies show that one of the things that women examine during dating, that cause them to reserve their commitment, is whether they think the man they are interested in will make a good parent or not. When a man makes a commitment to provide an environment conducive to raising children, a woman’s Safety Valve can open. If a man fails to convince a woman that he will care for both she and her children, her Safety Valve remains closed because there is a lack of unity and agreement about these things which in turn, prevents a couple from becoming “one flesh”.

His Love Gauge

The Sexual Interactions He Monitors

Revised 12/4/2015

Just as women monitor basic qualities of relationship by consciously and subconsciously measuring aspects of security, men monitor minimum foundational qualities too. While women seek security in the form of provision and protection, researchers have found that men desire domestic help as well as someone who will share physical activities with them by becoming a recreational companion―men most want this person to be their spouse. As with women these are just a few of the relational things important to men.

Not only do women want men to provide security for them, it is also something men want to do. Nowadays, because protection from life threatening predators is rarely, if ever necessary, men have shifted their attentions onto providing for their families. For many men, work is one way of expressing love and keeping the family safe. Additionally, how helpful a wife is at supporting her husband in achieving career goals matters greatly. Because work can also be emotionally stressful and physically draining, having a recreational companion who is willing to share in stress relieving physically fun activities, while offering domestic help around the home brings some rest after a hard day at work.

Beyond the foundational aspects of relationship of security and physical touch for women and domestic support and recreational companionship for men, just as women desire the more aesthetic aspects that an expressive relationship of intimate conversation can bring them, so men desire the aesthetics of a more instrumental type of relationship that brings intimacy through sex. For that reason men tend to monitor the frequency and quality of all three of these forms of help with the greatest emphasis given to sex.

Sex is the way that many men prefer to be loved by their wives and it is the way that they prefer to express their love to their wife. Both men and women feel valued when they believe that they are loved the way they want to be and feel rejected when they are not. Feelings of rejection often translate into a loss of self-worth and contribute to a wounded self-image.

The Magnitude of Desire

Why Men and Women Must Not Match

Revised 1/13/2016

The Role of Affection

How It Keeps The Relationship Running

Revised 1/13/2016

Please check back again soon!

Sexual Intercourse

His "One Flesh" Love Addiction

Not Posted Yet

How sex works to create a love addiction for him. Its how he wants to be loved and to express his love to his wife.

His Safety Valve

When He Doesn't Believe He is Being Loved

Not Posted Yet

If on their honeymoon he there discovers that she cannot be sexual with him, he may walk away from her in his displeasure. If she is indifferent or ambivalent to sex with him, his safety valve engages thus causing him to lose erection effectively shutting down sex. His safety valve, which is part of a double failsafe system, prevents children from being born into an unstable family. His circumcision is a litmus for the relationship


God's Litmus Test for Relationships

Not Posted yet

The 1st Sign:

Cognitive Drift

Not Posted Yet

According to the Least Interest Principle, whoever has the least interest in something controls that thing. In a relationship between a man and woman the person with the least interest for talking about feelings and developing emotional understanding will almost always be the husband. As mentioned earlier women are on average twenty times more emotional than men. That means that men are twenty time less emotional than women. Devoid of more intense feelings, the disposition of their thinking is thus relegated toward cognitive things. As you begin to notice that your conversations with your spouse have turned from empathizing with one another to conveying only facts and data. When you find yourselves talking about the weather; exchanging work schedules, and informing each other of what still needs doing, you are experiencing cognitive drift. You have begun drifting from a stronger emotional connection to weaker cognitive one. While Dr. John Gottman, in his book The Seven principles That Make Marriage Work, has identified six signs that predict the deterioration of a marriage, I believe the drifts come before those.

The 2nd Sign:

Sensual Drift

Not Posted Yet

Studies reveal that overtime couples stop kissing, hugging and expressing affection. Instead, couples drift from sensuality toward goal-directed sex. Studies also reveal that women crave this kind of attention because of the positive feelings it generates for them. The problem is that men often misinterpret the purpose of this non-sexual affection as license for foreplay.

Learn more....

The 3rd Sign:

The W-N-P-S Sub-Cycle

Not Posted Yet

The WNPS Sub-Cycle is the third sign of deterioration of the relationship and an alarm that activates spouses to reengage a partner who is missing in action.

Learn more....

The 4th Sign:

His Frustration:

Appetites and Deficits

Men have a 5 to 45 times greater appetite for sex than women do.

Learn more....

The 5th Sign:

Her Frustration:

Appetites and Deficits

 Because his Love Gauge is relatively easy to measure, God had to reveal the female perspective to us because, it is very difficult (especially for men) to detect―let alone measure. Through special revelation God has brought it into our awareness via Genesis 2:24. In measuring the husband’s Love Gauge we find a large deficit between what he wants versus what she can provide. For him that gap can be as small as five times or as large as forty-five times―with an average of twenty-five times. It seems reasonable to suspect that the female deficit is probably in the same magnitude even though Dr. Louann Brizendine, in her book The Female Brain, has determined that women are on average twenty times more emotional than men are. That means that both spouses must learn to handle disappointment and frustration with their mate from time to time.

Learn more....

False Core Beliefs

Things We Believe About Our Spouse that are Incorrect

Not Posted Yet

Due to gender misunderstandings and blatant attempts to blur gender lines, men and women have sometimes developed a false belief that men and women are the same which could lead to unrealistic expectations and false assumptions about their mate.

Learn more....

His Pressure Relief Valve

Coping With Loneliness and Invalidation

Not Posted Yet

Due to exacerbating childhood injuries and feelings of invalidation, rejections of his sexuality from his wife open him to looking for ways to cope. Workaholism and masturbation may be a man's more popular choices.

Learn more....

Her Pressure Relief Valve

Coping With Loneliness and Invalidation

Not Posted Yet

The fifth sign of deterioration is initiated by the woman. Ironically, while women are often the subtle initiators of relationship, as it turns out, they are also the initiators of a break-up. Studies confirm Scripture by revealing that women are the ones most likely to institute a separation. Men however, just as they are the ones who ratify the beginning of a relationship, are also the ones who ratify its closure by divorcing (cf. 1cor. 7:10-11). Most studies agree that this process usually happens within the first couple of years of a relationship. Because women carry more of the burden for maintaining the relationship that means that the must endure the drifts. To do so means that they must find ways of coping. Whatever they choose as a substitute must meet two requirements. It must be available to them and must also be acceptable for them to do. While women do choose methods of coping that are destructive to themselves and their relationship, God has provided something for them. Most families around the world are matrilocal meaning that the family either lives with the wife's mother or near her. Virtually all of the couples we see in our counseling practice have something in common. Most all have, in the past year, experienced either the death of the wife's mother or else she has been somehow estranged from her.

Learn more....

Wisdom From the Cycle

Learn more....

2 Things to Grieve and 1 Thing to Repent

The Energized Cycle


Not Posted Yet

Because he is not easily swayed, he becomes her emotional rock that anticipates how life events make her feel which cause him to seek to mediate negative events before they become an issue for her or else he becomes her comforter that helps to mediate her feelings in order to prevent her from being swept away emotionally by life events that cannot be changed. When a man does this for a woman her passion for him swells.

Learn more....

The Energized Cycle


Not Posted Yet

The Energized Cycle


Not Posted Yet

Works Cited:

[1] Why Men Never Remember and Women Never Forget, Marianne J. Legato United States: Rodale, Inc., 2005. (p. 102).

[2] From Family Collapse to America’s Decline: The Educational, Economic, and Social Costs of Family Fragmentation, Mitch Pearlstein, Lanham: Rowan & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2011. (p. 34).

[3] The Spread of Single-Parent Families in the United States Since 1960, David T. Ellwood and Christopher Jencks, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, 2002, (p. 31.)., In Mitch Pearlstein, (Ed.), From Family Collapse to America’s Decline: The Educational, Economic, and Social Costs of Family Fragmentation, Lanham: Rowan & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2011. (p. 34).

[4] Why Men Never Remember and Women Never Forget, Marianne J. Legato United States: Rodale, Inc., 2005. (p. 103).

Step By Step Specifics Page

The Birds and Bees Talk 

You've Never Heard...

Mikel Kelly, MA, LMHC

AACC World Conference

Nashville, TN

September 24, 2015


The Genesis 2:24

Cycle of Marital Intimacy

“That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.”

Genesis 2:24 — NIV



Have a Question or Comment for Mikel?

(Give your feedback here....)

This site uses Google reCAPTCHA technology to fight spam. Your use of reCAPTCHA is subject to Google's Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

Thank you for contacting us. We will get back to you as soon as possible

Heading Quote:

[1] Counseling Theories and Techniques: A Brief Overview & Christian Perspective, Siang-Yang Tan, Christian Counseling Today, Volume 18, No. 4, Forest: American Association of Christian Counselors, 2012. (p. 44).