The one negative behaviour that predicts the end of your happy marriage

Marriage takes work

There’s an art to creating and maintaining a happy marriage. Did you know that there’s been research conducted about the four behaviours which will determine the success or failure of a marriage (or, I’d hazard to guess, any relationship).

Just four behaviours! Any idea what they might be? What behaviour does your partner exhibit that triggers you? Or, perhaps look back at a past relationship; what behaviours brought down that relationship – not necessarily from your partner (they aren’t always the bad guys); what about your own behaviours?


Be aware of words and behaviours
Do you or your partner display any of these negative behaviours?

Dr John Gottman who researches marital stability and divorce prediction, claims he can pick those relationships which will end up in divorce with a 90% accuracy!

Wow! Why don’t we know about this?

As a marriage celebrant of 15 years, I’ve met literally thousands of couples, most of whom I’ve had good feelings about, but some of whom have triggered a gut-wrenching uneasiness. Funnily though, whether I knock the booking back or accept it, I can look back and find I was intuitively picking up the signs of marriage failure or success even before I learned about these four behaviours.

Okay, okay, I’ll stop with the suspense!

Has contempt crept into your relationship?
There are four negative behaviours which can impact the success or failure of our relationships

Four negative behaviours we need to watch out for

After watching hundreds of couples argue, Gottman found that the four predictors of failure in a marriage are contempt, criticism, defensiveness and stonewalling.

The nastiest of these negative communication patterns in a marriage? Contempt.

So, what does contempt look like? It’s mocking and treating your partner with disrespect. Eyerolling, hostile humour, name-calling, sneering … I’m sure you get the picture. These not so nice behaviours leave us feeling unloved and pained.

Don’t despair!

If you recognise your relationship here, don’t despair! There’s still hope. Dr Gottman’s ability to predict divorce is contingent upon these negative behaviours not ever changing, so there’s time to change this around by working together on your “we-ness” – your connectedness.

Remember back to when you first met! You adored each other, right?  Work on getting that back.

Look at each other with rose-coloured glasses – be each other’s biggest fan and in doing so you’ll be creating a culture of appreciation and respect. If contempt has crept into your relationship, it’s a tell-tale sign that the culture of your relationship is no longer positive and nurturing.  In fact, your relationship might be on pretty unstable grounds.

If there's contempt in your relationship, you need to work fast!
Work on creating a more positive marriage culture

So, rather than looking for things to pick on, look for the positives: Catch your partner doing something good. Tell them you appreciate them. Thank them. Hug more. Touch more. Laugh more. Approach your relationship as bipartisan rather than oppositional.

In making a concerted effort to create a more positive marriage culture, you’ll both be happier and your relationship will blossom again.

Find out more

I’ll post about the other three behaviours soon.  Follow me to find out more!

Wedding Celebrant Sunshine Coast
Sunshine Coast Marriage Celebrant,  Dr Lynette Maguire

About Dr Lynette Maguire:
Dr Lynette Maguire is a popular Marriage Celebrant on the Sunshine Coast, who is fascinated with people and behaviours prompting her to attain her first University degree majoring in Psychology (2010). Lynette has been a marriage celebrant for 15 years and is known for her genuine, high energy and fun, modern ceremonies.

How not to have a crumby day when the cake gets dropped

You can spend months and even years planning the most important day of your lives.  The fine details, the broad details, and all the details in between.  The thing is though – sometimes shit just happens!  But it’s how you deal with it that will make the difference between a brilliant day and one you’re remembering for all the wrong reasons.

I’ll give you an example.  Beautiful couple Jess and Chris have been together for 8 years: they’re happy, vivacious and a pleasure to be around.  I really loved being their celebrant – they were like my perfect couple.  I remember telling them that because they have such a great attitude about their wedding (something like: whatever goes wrong on the day won’t diminish the eye on the prize mentality, that is, they’ll be married!).

As the lead up to the wedding went smoothly, their big day arrived.  The styling was set up and looked pretty when I arrived.  The musician arrived.  Guests started arriving.

Unbeknownst to any of us the cake lady was on the phone to Jess saying she’d just dropped the cake and it was ruined.

There would be no cake, and therefore no dessert.  Eeek!

Don't let a little thing like a dropped cake ruin your day
Don’t let a little thing like a dropped cake ruin your day


Jess’ mum jumped into action and arranged for a large white mud cake and a small white mud cake to be collected from The Cheesecake Shop, and these were delivered just prior to Jess’ walk down the aisle.  At least there would dessert, but as yummy as they are, they looked nothing like a wedding cake.

The ceremony was amazing – full of laughs and tears and joy!  My favourites!

I snuck in to the reception when I heard about the cake disaster and saw The Cheesecake Shop mudcake creation turned into a mini-masterpiece by the staff who used leftover florals to make a beautiful wedding cake.

Well played Surfair, Marcoola – well played.

The Cheesecake Shop masterpiece created by quick thinking calm minds and the staff of Surfair, Marcoola
The Cheesecake Shop masterpiece created by quick thinking calm minds and the staff of Surfair, Marcoola


The smashed cake was delivered the next day (with no delivery charge) and everyone enjoyed some morning tea – laughing all the way.

And that’s how you deal with stuff that goes wrong – as it often does.

All smiles despite the cake disaster = eye on the prize! (each other) <3
All smiles despite the cake disaster = eye on the prize! (each other) <3

When you marry a man – twice

When you marry the same person twice …

A favourite tale from 2016.  I received an email enquiry from a bride in early 2016 about her wedding, so I sent her some information.  A few weeks later, she emailed me saying:

Hi Lynette,

Thanks for sending all that information through, I’d really like to book you for our wedding.  But I think we might have problem.  You see, my partner has been married before – and you married him.  I was at the wedding and it was the best wedding I’d ever been to.  Are you okay with this?

Owl you need is love!
Owl you need is love!

Haha!  Well, yes of course I was.  I remembered the groom (no names here 😃) and his first wife quite well – it had been a fabulous wedding!

I told the bride it didn’t bother me, if it didn’t both her or her fiancé.  They were both excited and they booked me, so the planning went ahead.

I figured I’d already know half the guests at the wedding!

Their wedding was just a wonderful as his first one – complete with bride dog and Cheezels for rings.

i love you in dinosaur

Really, can it get any better than that?


When websites attack

Life was pretty cruisy – late last year I was putting the finishing touches on my book, and I realised I hadn’t had any enquiries through my website.  I was still getting phone calls from new couples, and emails directly to me – but none via my website.   Then I looked at my bookings for 2017 and made a connection – my bookings were down also!


I sent myself an email through the Contact Me page and it didn’t come through.


I frantically called by webguy.  Apparently I had WordPress set on automatically update and, well, basically an update broke my contact form.

It had been broken for two whole months.

s%^&               f&*(               Bl**%$£

The thing is though, although my were bookings for 2017 were down, I’m a naturally very positive and happy person – for me it happened for a reason!  I’m loving lunching with friends on some weekends that I have off – and it’s given me time to work on my other loves, My Wedding Wish and Now Generation – and me!  And that to me is worthwhile!

So, the message is always look at the bright side of any situation!

And – if you think I’m probably booked, check again, I may not be  🙂  so ring me!

Ceremony fun at the Boatshed at CottonTree




2016: what a cracker you were!

While the world mourned some great musicians, actors, writers and minds, the year of Lynette Maguire was an absolute cracker!

I’m a pretty positive person naturally, and yeah stuff happened, but by and large 2016 for me, was the bomb!

2016 was my biggest year of weddings to date.  I met loads of loved up couples who absolutely loved their ceremonies.  One of things I love about what I do is that each wedding is different, because each couple is different – so no two weddings are ever the same!  Also, a lot of what I do is ad lib (hey you can plan these things down to the micro-second, but sometimes life throws curve balls at you) and I love the spontaneity, joy and laughter at these times!

Weddings are inherently emotional, because, well, they’re weddings – but it doesn’t mean they need to be boring.  Being all loved up can be fun too!  And I’ve had loads of fun this year – I can honestly say there’s not a couple that I didn’t connect with, or who didn’t adore their ceremony!  It’s the connection that really matters, you see.  Here’s a few pics:


So, what happened this year, besides awesome weddings?  Well, I conducted 4 funerals this year and 5 same sex commitments.   Lynette Maguire Marriage Celebrant was interviewed by media a couple of times, chatting about trends in weddings, same sex marriage and ceremony venues on the Sunshine Coast.



And aside from that, I taught in Semester 1 at USC.

I was asked to be keynote speaker at five (5) events this year – talking about my Doctoral research into the influencers of teen behaviour (social networking, narcissism, violence, cyberbulling, suicide) through my consultancy business Now Generation

My doctoral research was published!  Whoot!

'Is social networkimg increasing narcissism and violence in teens?'
‘Is social networkimg increasing narcissism and violence in teens?’

My discussion cards are selling well.  They’re designed to start conversations with teens about stuff that matters.

Designed to get your family (including your teens) talking
Designed to get your family (including your teens) talking


My next book, Selfies, sexting, savagery and suicide: Welcome to the era of narcissism which is written for the parents and caregivers of teens, is out next year – this is what it’ll look like:

The academic research rewritten for everymum! A must have for all parents of teens and tweens
The academic research rewritten for everymum! A must have for all parents of teens and tweens



My baby, My Wedding Wish Ltd is now registered as a national charity with DGR status (that means we can give tax deductible receipts)  yay!!  For those who don’t know, My Wedding Wish has been running since 2013 and we gift weddings to the terminally ill.  To date we’ve gifted over $250,000.00 worth of weddings, renewal of vow ceremonies and same sex commitments.  If you know anyone who fits the criteria (terminal) and they want to be married but can’t because of all reasons when you’re terminal, send them to me!  J

Gifting weddings to the terminally ill around Australia
Gifting weddings to the terminally ill around Australia

A story in the local Profile magazine made the finalist’s list of the ‘Most Inspiring Story of 2016’ – we didn’t win, but we always love the love!

The story about Lynette and My Wedding Wish was nominated for the most inspiring story of 2016
The story about Lynette and My Wedding Wish was nominated for the most inspiring story of 2016

The gorgeous folk at the RACV Resort in Noosa (highly recommend for weddings) held a Melbourne Cup lunch for My Wedding Wish, and raised $2,000 for us!  Thank you RACV  xx

The other fabulous folk from Best Western at Kawana (another great wedding venue), held a Christmas Party for all the wedding suppliers of the Sunshine Coast, and proceeds were donated to MWW also.  Thank you lovely people!

Our Steering Committee have been hard at work and we’re almost rolled out around Australia.  It’s been a long journey but we’re now gifting weddings other than in SE Queensland!

To top it all off, My Wedding Wish has been nominated in the Sunshine Coast’s 2017 Australia Day Awards!  Whooot!



I’m jumping out of my skin for an amazing 2017!  I had computer issues where for 2 months my website contact form was down so I missed SO MANY enquiries!  L  But we’re back into the swing of things now!

I hope your 2017 is brilliant.  xxx