Smart Phone App Helps Strengthen Marriages and Romantic Relationships

Screenshot of Gottman Card Decks app
T​he Gottman Card Decks app, shown above, gives users 14 categories of cards to utilize in romantic relationships. According to UT Extension, the app helps partners grow toward one another, rather than away from one another. Image courtesy UTIA. 

KNOXVILLE – Love is in the air, and also in your smart phone. While many will use their smart phones to make dinner reservations or order flowers this Valentine’s Day, University of Tennessee Extension specialist Heather S. Wallace suggests using your smart phone to strengthen your relationship with your partner a different way.

“Relationships take work. Sometimes more than anticipated, sometimes less. But the key to healthy relationships is to grow toward your partner, not away,” Wallace continues. “John and Julie Gottman have researched how to create and maintain strong romantic relationships for nearly 50 years. Using what they’ve learned, they’ve developed ‘The Gottman Method’ to help couples.”

Part of The Gottman Method, the Gottman Card Decks app is a tool couples can use to bolster their affection for one another. In this free tool, smart phone users can explore 14 card decks with more than one thousand flash cards of questions to ask your partner and suggestions of things to say and do together. Decks include open ended questions, everyday moments to notice and suggestions for showing appreciation. Users can explore cards with a partner, or shuffle through them individually.

“In 2016, 25,018 couples divorced in Tennessee,” says Wallace. “Everyone wants to avoid that at all costs, and renewing interest in your partner through the questions in the Gottman Card Decks is an easy step anyone can take.” To start using the card deck, log on to or search for and download “Gottman Card Deck” in your app store.

For other Gottman Method resources, including love languages classes and programs, contact the family and consumer sciences agent at your local county Extension office.

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Heather S. Wallace, assistant professor, UT Extension Family and Consumer Sciences, 865-974-7193,​