It was a joy and delight to share Friends Couple Enrichment with Honolulu Friends and friends. The advocacy of Jenny and David Foster, former FCE facilitators (and current Honolulu Friends Meeting friends in residence), was instrumental in making it happen.
The six participating couples had been together from 6 months to 44 years. Many were long-time members/attenders at HFM, while one couple and two partners were not Quakers. We were reminded of the richness that relationship diversity, in all its forms, offers us, and how FCE events create a community of couples while deepening each couple’s relationship.
Couples in new relationships and those together for many years both affirmed the importance of the workshop skills in deepening their relationships. For those together for many years, it was particularly rich for them to rekindle deep intimacy and learn new communication skills for tending tender topics.
We heard gratitude for the ways participants grew and deepened their own relationships, and their relationships with the other couples, through sharing of laughter and tears, and tenderness mixed with playful opportunities; all grounded in the core practice of witnessed couples dialogue. Several participants spoke specifically to the power and sacredness of the witnessing presence when they were dialoging or witnessing dialogues.
For us there was a special sweetness in gathering with a group who shared deeply and supported each other with care through the weekend. We look forward to reconnecting with all participant couples and a future visit to Honolulu Friends Meeting!