by Allen Klein, MA, CSP


Most people, I am guessing, think of love as serious. Yet, when women were asked what they wanted in a potential mate, one of the most important things was that the man had to have a good sense of humor.


Maybe it is because women intuitively know that couples who can laugh together can weather the trials and tribulations that life inevitably brings.


I know one couple, for example, who hide red sponge-rubber clown noses around the house. When an argument breaks out, one of them dons the nose and, like a red-light at an intersection, the potential fight is stopped in its tracks.


A friend of mine, who is a therapist, also told me how she uses another fun prop with some couples in conflict. Recently, a woman complained about how insensitive her husband was. For nearly an entire session she harped on his saying there was lint in her belly-button when they were making love the previous night. To help the woman let go and lighten up about this incident, the therapist asked both of them to don Groucho glasses and resume their lint-filled conversation. As soon as the giggling started, the complaining stopped.


And finally, a colleague of mine sent me an amusing story, which illustrates how a little humor can make a big point. Although this married couple enjoyed their new fishing boat together, it was the husband who was behind the wheel operating the boat. He was concerned about what might happen in an emergency. So one day, out on the lake he said to his wife, “Please take the wheel, dear. Pretend that I am having a heart attack. You must get the boat safely to shore and dock it.” So she drove the boat to shore and safely docked it.


Later that evening, the wife walked into the living room where her husband was watching television. She sat down next to him, switched the TV channel, and said to him, “Please go into the kitchen, dear. Pretend I’m having a heart attack and set the table, cook dinner and wash the dishes.”

Allen Klein is a professional speaker and author of The Healing Power of Humor. He can be reached at

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