TAMPA, Fla. — Kenneth and Maxine Reyes have been married for 26 years. The couple met when Ken was 19 and Maxine was 20. Ken still has the paper that Maxine wrote her number on. It’s framed.
“You know when you love a woman when you voluntarily seek out to meet her needs,” said Ken. “For me, to feel love is really to be respected. To all couples that, no matter what you’re going through, you can overcome it.”
Both are now retired, but The U.S. Army and US Air Force often sent them in different directions, through deployments.
“It can be even more difficult for persons that are dual military like us,” said Maxine. “You just have to stay flexible, ya know? It was challenging for me. Being away from my baby girl.”
The couple is raising a daughter. Today, they are doing it under the same roof, but while enlisted, it was much different.
“When I came back from a 15-month combat deployment, they sent her out for deployment,” said Maxine. “It was very challenging. The army has a methodology of saying: the mission first. As men, traditionally, we’re conditioned to be very quiet. Reserved. Hold it in.”
Anymore, they share. It started around their 15th year of marriage. They started offering what had worked for them. Eventually, they wrote a book, “Happily Joint”: The Secret to Relationship Resiliency.” The book is a guide for couples. For Ken and Maxine, it’s reflection. They now serve as relationship coaches.
“You have to take an assertive effort to go out there and maintain that relationship,” said Ken. “I only provide male perspective, and she provides the ladies.”
“Knowing our love for each other and we want to get to, you have move on through forgiveness,” said Maxine.
“Happily Joint”: The Secret to Relationship Resiliency” is available on Amazon.