The Loving Touch

By Dr. Charles D. Schmitz and Dr. Elizabeth A. Schmitz
"the marriage doctors"

Award Winning Authors of the NEW Hardback Book
Golden Anniversaries: The Seven Secrets of Successful Marriage
Makes a GREAT Wedding or Anniversary Gift

Also available at and your local bookstore.

We have been married for 41 years and simply can’t keep our hands off of each other! For many years, we thought we were unique. Then we started our research for our book, and did we get a big surprise -- virtually every happily married coupled we interviewed reported the same condition! Over time we have come to call it the “tactile response.” Literally translated, it means, “I touch you here, I touch you there, I touch you everywhere!”

During our interviews with married couples we pay a lot of attention to their tactile interactions. More often than not, they sit on the couch during the interview and hold hands or place some part of their body on their mate’s body. It is their way of saying “I love you so much I simply must touch you.” So why all of this touching?

As part of our interviews we asked the couples to tell us what they believe to be the most endearing and important characteristics of their spouse. We continued with the following questions: “How would you describe your spouse? What adjectives would you use?” Here are the words we most often heard: encouraging, positive, loving, honest, has integrity, beautiful (or handsome), understanding, wonderful, patient, loves life, loves me, unselfish, giving, caring, trusting, generous, helpful, conscientious, and humorous. Words to live by in a marriage wouldn’t you say? And they said these things unabashedly, without apologies.

Successful couples know nearly everything about each other. They have studied in infinite detail how their spouse looks, feels and acts. They know what makes the one they love tick and can recite in scripture and verse their best qualities. They brag about each other all the time. They love each other for a whole bunch of reasons and don’t mind telling you what they are.

What do their words about each other have to do with touching? Here’s what we observed during our many interviews—when couples told us something special about their spouse in response to our questions, they would touch each other as if to emphasize the importance of the words. Touching was like an exclamation mark! Over time, we believe that these couples, like the two of us, say these words with a touch without always saying the words out loud. Touching becomes kind of a Morse Code—a substitute for language and the expression of feeling. Successfully married couples have mastered the Morse Code of marriage – it’s called touching.

A wise person once said that if you pass your spouse 100 times a day, you should touch them 100 times a day. When you touch someone, you are acknowledging his or her presence and expressing your love. In effect you are saying, “I love you so much I simply must touch you.”

*Excerpted from Golden Anniversaries: The Seven Secrets of Successful Marriage, ©2008, Briarcliff Publishing LLC

Author's Bio: 

With more than 25 years of research experience on successfully married couples and their own 41 years of successful marriage, Drs. Charles and Elizabeth Schmitz know what makes marriage work. From their research they have discovered seven pervasive characteristics present in all successful marriages. Their book, Golden Anniversaries: The Seven Secrets of Successful Marriage exposes their secrets for success through poignant, real life stories, garnered from hundreds of interviews with happily married couples as well as from their own 41-year marriage. Get started with “the marriage doctors” by taking their Marriage Quiz or asking them a question at Ask The Marriage Doctors or downloading their FREE eBook at Salad Recipes For Love and Health.

Dr. Charles D. Schmitz has been a highly successful faculty member and administrator in higher education for 37 years. His teaching has focused in the areas of counseling psychology and leadership development. During his distinguished career he has received some 30 local, state, and national awards and honors; published over 100 articles and manuscripts; delivered well over 500 public speeches, professional presentations, and workshops; and has traveled throughout the world. He has appeared on radio and television, and has been frequently quoted in the print media. He received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is currently Dean of the College of Education and Professor of Counseling and Family Therapy at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Dr. Elizabeth A. Schmitz was an award winning administrator and educator in the K-12 public schools for 36 years and has lectured in numerous college courses in the areas of counseling and leadership, since receiving her doctoral degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia. As the former chief operating officer for a school district of over 20,000 students and 2,100 employees, she understands complex organizations and human relations issues. During her long career she received more than 25 local, state, and national awards and honors, published over 75 articles and manuscripts, and delivered over 400 speeches, workshops, and presentations. Elizabeth has made numerous radio appearances, featured on television, and quoted extensively in the print media on a variety of topics over the years. She is currently president of Successful Marriage Reflections, LLC.