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Hi, we are Dale and Heather Aceron, and this is The Quick and Dirty Marriage. Through our own struggles and victories over the past 20 years of being married together, we are here to show you some simple steps in getting your relationship pointed back in the right direction.

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Feb 1, 2018

In today's Episode we want to share a few different fight styles and how destructive they are, BUT, we also give you simple steps you can take today, to manage how you argument in a more healthy way!
  • Criticism and Blaming (1st)
    • You are always late!
    • "You never get off your phone"
    • "You never..." "You always..." 
This style could lead to contempt and you begin to attack their character and you now add the word 'Because...'
  • "You are always late...BECAUSE you are so lazy!"
  • "You never get off your phone...BECAUSE you are so selfish"
There are 2 ways to respond to this.
  • Defensiveness (2nd)
With this style, once you hear any accusations or comments against you, you are quick to react, your v
olume rises and you pull up the shield and begin to defend yourself.
This could lead to defensive and harsh responses such as 
  • "Just shut up!" 
  • "Oh never mind"
And then you begin to move into belittling the person and also start attacking them as a person
  • "Just shut up, you're so stupid!"
This style makes it difficult to have a conversation with someone so defensive.  The conversation escalates, you start going back and forth and you both go nowhere.
  • Stonewalling (3rd)
A good word picture. You become cold, hard, and nothing is getting through. You are a stone wall!
By completely shutting down, the conversation ends, they don't exist to you and it makes the other person feel like they don't matter.
They can become, nothing gets solved, issues get swept under the under the rug and then fight after fight, you end up building a mountain of unsolved issues.
What can you do to Manage these?
Begin using  "I" Statements (own your feelings) instead you "You: statements
Try using the XYZ Forumula by Les and Leslie Parrott
  • In situation X, when you do Y, I feel Z
    • "At night when we're getting ready for bed, when you stay on your phone, I feel like I don't matter
A complaint is easier to react to, instead of a criticism. 
Own your responsibilities.  Take what happened and avoid repeating them now that you know how it makes them feel.
Let your spouse know you need time to process the issue.  Give them an appropriate amount of time and then return to them and discuss.  This eliminates the emotions around it and you can solve things respectfully. 

The One Key
In every argument or even fight, it's not always an agreement but it's more of an understanding of the person and their perspective. And this can cause your relationship to draw closer, instead of pushing you further apart!