Marriage Missions International

Conversation Starters for Married Couples

It’s amazing how we can be married ten, twenty, thirty, forty, or even fifty plus years and still find there is much we don’t know about each other. Some experts say it’s because we’ve lost the art of conversation. Others say it’s because we don’t allow it to continue after we marry —we allow everyday living to separate and distance us instead.

Whatever the case, it’s none-the-less important to keep the lines of communication and conversation open so you grow together rather than apart. Don’t allow yourself to get into the situation like Pat Williams describes:

“The trouble in our marriage wasn’t infidelity, it was fidelity with fatigue, a marriage gone soft and sour due to lack of attention. It was the lack of communication that nearly killed us.”

Be intentional. Look, find, figure out, MAKE the time to converse and connect with each other in meaningful ways.

“Dialog is to love what blood is to the body.”

So, to help you in this mission for your marriage, we have provided some “Conversation Starters” from various resources to help you get started.

Keep in mind that these questions are not meant to cause division between you but rather to help you to better understand and know each other. If the conversation starts to go in a negative direction, stop and start again. If you need to revisit a particular question at another time to bridge your differences, then set a time to do so. But aim to do it in a way that is respectful of each other’s character and feelings.

During this time, however, keep the conversation going in a less confrontational direction.

Below you will find a sampling of several questions from the book titled, Creative Conversation Starters for Couples, written by Robert and Pamela Crosby, published by Honor Books. Unfortunately, this resource is no longer in print. (But if you can find a copy of the book somewhere in the future, you may find it helpful).

During your time together ask each other as many of the questions below as you decide to do at one sitting (and ask additional questions during other times you set aside):

• If you could store up only one hour’s worth of memory in your mind, which hour of our marriage would you want to remember?

• If you could have witnessed any biblical event, which one would you choose?

• When do you feel most loved?

• Which strengths in your life bring you the greatest satisfaction?

• What is the best way for me to encourage you?

• What time of day is best for us to talk?

• If we could just drop what we’re doing and go do something fun, what would it be?

• What is one of the most adventurous things you’ve ever done?

• In your opinion, what makes a great parent?

• What are five essential values we want our children to embrace above all others?

• What can we do as a couple to change the world in which we live?

• What goals would you like us to accomplish in our marriage in the next year? … five years? … ten years?

Below are several questions from the book 201 Great Questions, written by Jerry Jones, published by NavPress. (To obtain more questions you’ll need to obtain the book —which we recommend! And/or you may want to obtain the book 201 Great Questions for Married Couples. To begin your time together, ask the following questions:

• What is your earliest memory?

• If you could live in any other time period, past or future, what period would you choose? Why?

• What movie or television program have you seen in the last year that you wish all your friends could see?

• If someone gave you enough money to start a business of your own, what kind of business would you start?

• If you didn’t have to worry about making a living, what would you most like to do for the rest of your life?

• When making decisions, do you put more trust in facts or in feelings? Are you pleased with most of your decisions?

• What do you consider to be your greatest strengths? Your greatest weaknesses?

• What is usually the first thing that comes to your mind when you think about God?

• What would you most like people to remember you for after you die?

• What are the five things you are most thankful for in your life right now? What are some of the things you do to show this thankfulness?

• Whose marriage do you most consider to be a model marriage? What is it about their marriage that you most admire?

• Has there been a time in the past year or two when God seemed especially real or close to you? If so, explain.

If it’s possible, you may try (because it’s no longer being published) to find the book, Now We’re Talking, by Robert and Pamela Crosby, published by Focus on the Family. Below are a few sample questions you can ask each other (which will hopefully inspire you to obtain the book, if you can find it, to continue building your intimacy):

• What’s the best book you’ve read recently? Tell me about it. What did you like about it?

• Which holiday do you enjoy the most? Why that one?

• If you could possess any extraordinary talent in one of the arts, what would you choose?

• If you could bring any former leader from the past back to run our country today, who would it be?

• What makes a married relationship distinctively Christian? How is a Christian couple different from a non-Christian one?

• In what ways do you think the marriages of our parents affect the marriage you and I share today? Be honest with me.

• Are there some times when a disagreement needs to be postponed? if so, when? How can we discern those kinds of times?

• When have you felt the most loved by me?

• What fears do you wrestle with the most? How do you manage them?

• What practical steps can we take as a couple to “affair-proof” our marriage?

• With so many marriages falling apart around us today, what steps can you and I take to ensure that we stay close as a couple, emotionally and spiritually?

For additional questions you can use as conversation starters as a married couple, please click onto the web site links provided below:

DATE NIGHT CONVERSATION STARTERS

30 WAYS TO START A CONVERSATION WITH YOUR SPOUSE

CONVERSATION FUN FOR COUPLES

•  MORE CONVERSATION FUN FOR COUPLES

And then below are questions that are recommended to ask each other every year:

•  10 QUESTIONS Every Woman Should Ask Her Husband Every Year

•  10 QUESTIONS Every Husband Should Ask His Wife Annually

This resource was put together by Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions.

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Comments

22 Responses to “Conversation Starters for Married Couples”
  1. Sue says:

    (USA)  Yes, these are great tools! Many of the questions are useful if even if you’re dating. You will also be glad to know that Focus on the Family, the original publisher, has just updated the third edition of this book, along with Conversation Starters for Kids….it fits in your purse! These books have been a gift to our family times.

  2. Santana says:

    (USA) I used these questions as a game for my husband & I. He had to work that day, but he filled out his answers on paper and we talked them over when he came home. It helped a lot because we hadn’t spoke to each other in 3 days due to marriage problems. After playing the question game with these really, really good questions we have been doing more outside activities together. Communication is the key to marriage good or bad!!! Thank you so much. Sincerely, Married4ever(10 yrs so far)

  3. Dima says:

    (JORDAN) I got my period last week & my husband insisted on having sex in a moral way …I did what he wanted 4 times in that week, then yesterday he asked again for that so I said plz let us do it after I finish my… Then he said [vile words and said] I want it right now ..how come you dare to tell me that? He hit me and told me not to touch him again. After that he went to the TV room to watch a porn movie. He stayed there for 3 hours watching it. By the way, when I am not having my period we just have sex one time a week. Is that fair?

    • Nagy says:

      (EGYPT)  Your husband has to know marriage isn’t just sex; but love before sex. And if he loves you in Jesus Christ, he’ll do it for you, not only to himself.

    • Barry says:

      (USA)  This guy is real trouble!! Porn is a number one killer of marriages, and he is not treating you with respect, or even as a human being. Beware, it will not get better!

    • Dr. Nichols from United States says:

      No it’s not fair, but it sounds like he has a fetish with that. You should never allow anyone to hit you, no matter who or what it is.

  4. Jessica says:

    (USA)  I’m having trouble on having conversations with my newlywed husband. He says I don’t talk to him as much as he would like but I feel I do talk to him. He says since I don’t talk to him he goes on the computer and chats with females. But I tell him hello, you have guy friends, why can’t you just talk to them instead of other females? I know he would trip if I was to talk to other guys. So I hope these questions can help or my husband might leave me due to lack of communication. I do talk to him but sometimes I only have a few words to say here and there and other times we have conversations. Any advice from anyone will help me.

    • Jason says:

      (USA)  Jessica, I understand that sometimes couples feel as though there is nothing new to share with their spouse. However I do feel that if your husband is requesting more conversation then perhaps you could pray for God to assist you with opening up to your husband in a way that would touch his heart and cause him to see that conversing with you is greater than it could be with any other woman.

      I recommend that you read The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman. One of the love languages is Words of Affirmation, which could very well be what your husband needs from you. More than anything else. Pray for your husband that he will be reminded that he is leading your marriage, either positive or negative, but he IS leading. Pray that he will begin to see how speaking to other women online is hurting you and could damage your marriage. I wish you the best and I will pray that you can focus on God and trust in Him. Ephesians 2:10. Be Blessed!

    • Andre says:

      (SOUTH AFRICA) Jessica, I will give you advice in the following. I had to learn to talk after 14 years of marriage after we almost lost each other. First in any marriage must be God. I started with the old 20 question game. My wife is still having problems expressing her feelings. I started to write what I wanted her to know in a diary and each night I would read what I wrote the day before because that is how I felt at the moment and I started to talk to her about it.

      After 3 weeks we started to have the most wonderful conversations, and it has come to the point where we understand each other better and we are stronger in our marriage now than we ever were before. She made a suggestion tonite that we talk about fun things tomorrow and that shows me the path we took has helped and I have never felt better. Maybe you can try this. Let me know how it goes. Good luck and God Bless :)

    • Dr. Nichols from United States says:

      You have to listen to his request to communicate with him, because he is seeking it from you, but you aren’t giving it to him and he is seeking it in a chat room. Please find time to communicate with your spouse.

  5. Elaine says:

    (USA)  Jessica, you are right to be concerned about your husband talking to other women on the internet. That opens a door to all sorts of potential problems. Work on making couple friends and see them often. Use some of the conversation starters recommended on this website. Does he have guy friends he can talk to? Are you in a couples church group? Hope some of these ideas help. Don’t give up.

  6. Dreams says:

    (USA)  I may not be Christian, but these are really good questions! When my husband and I first got together, we didn’t get to see each other a lot, so we messaged over the internet. Of the things we did most was ask questions! We’ve been having troubles lately, and I’m hoping these wonderful questions help us along to the beautiful marriage we had before. Thanks for this article, I feel it will help a lot! We were really close when we talked a lot, but we’re not so much anymore. :)

  7. Micky says:

    (USA)  My husband and I been married for a year and a half. For whatever reason, we can’t get along. He’s hit me numerous times; he thinks our marriage is based on sex only. He calls me names most of the time. He threatened to leave me. He even made his whole family think I’m not good, as if I’m the problem. Everyone from his family stopped talking to me. He disrespects my family. I cannot take this anymore. Any words of advice?

    • Dennis says:

      (USA)  Micky, that isn’t how God intended marriage to be. He said “husbands love your wives”. Hitting you, and calling you names isn’t loving you. I’ll be the first to say to try to save your marriage if at all possible, but he has broken the vows he took the day he married you. He promised to, (and I know that the vows are different in every church, but the basics are) love, honor, and protect you. Beating you shows that he doesn’t love you, calling you names, and talking bad about you to his family shows he doesn’t honor you. And those things together shows that he isn’t protecting you. There are times when it is better for a wife to leave her husband instead of staying around to be a punching bag.

      IF you want to try to fix things then try sitting down, and talking with him, but if, or I suppose I should say when that doesn’t work you NEED to get out of there. Plan out your conversation in a letter, have your bags packed with the essentials to move back in with family so you’ll be ready if things go bad, and if he won’t listen to you leave the letter where he’ll find it when you’re gone. Be sure to let your family know what you’re planning, and have someone ready to come get you if things go bad, and have their number ready to dial on your cell phone in case things go bad.

      Either way you choose to go with this you need to know that you aren’t his punching bag, and you don’t have to sit there, and take it.

    • Dr. Nichols from United States says:

      A real relationship consists of love, respect and loyalty. Family should never be involved in your marriage, especially if they are being negative. Your spouse should never ever hit you and you should not accept that repeated behavior, because God didn’t make you a punching bag for him. If you need to seek help, then please do so as soon as possible no matter who gets upset with you. It’s better to save your life, instead of letting someone take it away from you possibly one day, by abusing you to a point where they injure you bad enough where it causes death. Seek help now!

  8. lIZ says:

    (UNITED STATES) I’ve been married for 10 years. My husband and I have a very rocky marriage. While he is a great father and provider, we simply do not get along. He often comes home late, sometimes stating he has to work late. Sometimes there is no explanation. He often does not talk to me when he does come home. He simply goes into the kitchen and starts working more.

    When he wants to be intimate he attempts to make me laugh as if this serves as an opening for him to get close. I have figured this out and now I’m tired of it. If I bring up any topic that stresses him, like bills, or going to church, the conversation spirals downward. He makes me feel like I’m getting on his last nerve and tries to shut the conversation down.

    I’m left in the dark about our finances. I never know where we are with things. That makes me feel unsafe and left out. I feel like a roommate. To avoid feeling hurt and isolated, I have determined that it’s just better for me to stay out of his way, do my duties to cook, clean, and care for the children. But I have withdrawn from any intimacy and while that hurts because I need to be connected, I feel safer not connecting with him. Any suggestions?

    • Niki says:

      (USA) Hi, Liz- I don’t feel particularly qualified to give you answers, but I merely wanted to chime in to say that you are not alone. I have a husband of 9 years, who is often gone for work or working at home when I would rather have him engaged with me and the kids. We, too, struggle with intimacy. I’m made to feel like (1) I’m a cold fish or (2) It’s all my fault (our lack of intimacy).

      I’ve learned that men struggle. I don’t know what mine’s particular problem is. Yours may also have something eating away at him. We never know the inner struggles of another without communication.

      After more than 6 years of decline, my husband has finally agreed to see a therapist with me, and we’ll see that therapist for the first time after the new year starts. I finally stopped shoving my bad emotions down where he couldn’t see them (I ran out of room for them anyway).

      My suggestion is to have hope, to pray and try to make connections for yourself. Remember to treat him with respect (especially in your words to others) because this can create a wound that can ruin a relationship. If you want healing, this isn’t really negotiable. It’s impossible to fight back and expect things not to get worse. Instead of “piling on” when arguments happen, speak facts and observations and leave it at that. This means you can both respect him and your own integrity (by not denying your feelings or actual happenings). This I have found to be the only “win-win” outcome of disagreements, even though it seldom feels like you have won (you have to redefine this for yourself). Best wishes. I wish I could give you a hug and invite you for tea!

    • Joel says:

      (USA) As a husband, I would recommend letting your husband read your post as it describes how you are feeling instead of trying to talk about issues like church and bills. These issues will only make him feel more stress and close up more. Often, men are not very adept at understanding why our wives are upset, only that they are. We hate the cryptic messages and prefer direct and open communication.

      If he’s working so feverishly, it’s probably because he feels as if he needs to attain a certain level of success or wealth in order to make his family or himself happy. There are other reasons for workaholism, but this is a pretty common one.

      I don’t know his communication style, but my wife and I write to each other in a notebook when talking doesn’t seem to be working.

    • Andre says:

      (SOUTH AFRICA) Hi Liz, the man you describe is a lot like I was in my marriage. All I can give you is this. I was in a lot of ways worse than what you described. What changed me was my wife just came to a point where she told me she doesn’t love me anymore and I have become like a BF to her. That destroyed my world knowing that the one person I loved more than life itself had no more feeling for me. She started to talk to me like I was nothing more than her friend and I had to make the choice to fight for her love or let her leave me. It was a gamble but God was with us all the way and I can say my marriage is stronger than ever before.

      I gave some advice from this experience to Jessica as well. Pray and God will guide you like he did me. I am more free today than I have ever been before in my life. But again there are no guarantees. If you talk and he does get upset always stay calm and let that be an inspiration to him to do the same. It has worked for me. Please let me know how it is going :) God Bless.

  9. Meg says:

    (USA) After nearly 15 years, when my husband and I finally get time to relax together, we seem to run out of things to talk about. Work, kids, finances; and then it turns to, “So… what else is new?” We’re away on a long weekend together and I am determined to have lively dinner talk –I’m so glad I found these conversation starters! I copied the lists into my phone and I plan to pull them out if it looks like we’re running dry.

  10. John says:

    (USA) I’m a minister, trying to serve God and keep a balance in my home. I noticed that the conversation in our marriage was dying so I tried some things to make things better. But while doing so my wife ends up being unfaithful talking to another man. I love my wife very much, I’ve forgiven my wife. But at times anger and bitterness rise up. At times she makes comments and talks about things with others outside the home or puts me on the spot in the front of people. She said I don’t talk to her. At times I really want to. There is a lot hurt and pain in my heart. Any suggestions?

  11. Zachary from United States says:

    Me and my wife have been together for 3 years. We are young and have two kids under 4. This past year I got a job working offshore so I’m gone 28 days at a time. Last week she came to me and said that her feelings for me have gone away and she’s wanting a divorce. Over the last two years I have been stressed with money issues and she said I closed up and stopped communicating with her and she has lost interest.

    I do not want a divorce and I know the things I have said or not said that was so bad. I always had to be right, I always dwelled on the past and her past. I want to work through this and be the husband she deserves but she has closed up to me and says she no longer loves me. We still talk and live together and she says she is trying but she doesn’t think it will help. Is there any advice for me to spark the love again and work through this?

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