Here Is The First And Most Important Chapter in My Book, It Is About How To Have Peaceful Coflict Resolution and Stop Fighting With Your Spouse

July 3, 2012

This is the first and most important chapter in my soon to be published book (JANUARY 2013 ON AMAZON) entitled SEX EDUCATION FOR ADULTS, SECRETS TO AMAZING SEX AND HAPPILY EVER AFTER TOO. I need your help to make it a best seller. I want to prove that a book written from a Christian perspective can be a best seller in the secular world. I welcome all ideas on how to promote it and ask that you join my blog and ask other contacts to as well so that I can notify you when the book is published. It will only be $9.95 and I guarantee you more and better sex, better relationships with your spouse or your money back. When have you ever seen an author offer a money back guarantee? Would you like us on Twitter and retweet this post on Twitter please? Thanks for your help in advance.

RESOLVING CONFLICT PEACEFULLY

Fighting comes naturally, peacefully resolving conflict does not. I am sure that you can remember all too well fights that you have had in your own relationship. The problem with fighting is that no one wants to “lose” the fight so we lock into combat that almost always escalates into dysfunction. That dysfunction can be screaming, throwing things, cursing and/or hitting a spouse.

I had a couple as a client locked into dysfunction. The woman had gotten into a pattern of screaming, cursing and throwing things. The husband admirably did not hit her, but tried to keep the peace because of what the wife’s tirades and tantrums did to the children. She once broke her own finger by repeatedly slamming the front door harder and harder. Problems were never resolved; she just bullied the husband to get her own way. I could not reach her and they ultimately got a divorce. She continued these patterns in a subsequent marriage.

I always tell my clients to first go and study two movies from the rental store: THE BREAK UP, and WAR OF THE ROSES. You can see art imitating life. Study these movies and see yourselves portrayed in these movies. Watch and see the mistakes that they have made and that you have made similar mistakes as well. Children are terrified when they hear parents fighting. Remember the scene from PRINCE OF TIDES when the young children ran and jumped into the bay. They lived in an idyllic setting on an island. They escaped by running out of the house and jumping into the water. Most children don’t have that option and simply suffer through the fights, terrified. If you have not seen The Prince of Tides, it is also mandatory on my homework list.
To avoid those problems and dysfunction, I have listed some techniques that are guaranteed to work if you will use them. I tell my clients that they both need to agree to change their ways. They also need to forgive each other and enact the old familiar slogan from the playground: A DO OVER. Admit that you have both made mistakes and that as a couple you want a do over and agree to rules that I have listed for peacefully resolving the conflict. A great idea is to adopt the physician’s vow about dealing with your conflicts; “ First, do no harm.”

When a spouse is angry with you, the first rule is to SHUT UP AND LISTEN. I know that it is hard to do. You need to let them get out everything that bothers them before you counter their arguments. Once they are done, ask to repeat back what they said so that you and the spouse are sure that you understand the problem. Then ask: “In what way can we resolve this problem”? This goes a long way to resolving the problem. Calmly discuss solutions. “A soft answer turns away wrath, but grievous words stir up anger” Proverbs 15:1

AGREE TO DISAGREE

Too many times people are locked into winning. The problem with winning is that there is also a loser who will feel humiliated.
Better to “agree to disagree”. In this way, neither party feels like they have “lost” the argument.

FLIPPING A COIN

If negotiating has not worked and the person is still adamant that they want a solution the Bible has a solution: “The lot causes contentions to cease and parts the mighty.” Proverbs

Casting lots was a dice game, but a modern day corollary would be a flip of the coin to settle the issue. You both have to agree in advance that this will settle the issue, and then stick to it.

NEGOTIATING CONFLICT

When you are in a discussion where you both have a point of view that you feel strongly about, there is another alternative. You can agree to negotiate the argument for a peaceful settlement. You can do this by adopting a 10 scale. You each assign a numerical value form 1-10 depending on how firmly you believe your side is worth. You have to give an honest evaluation. Using a 10 where there is absolutely no room for negotiation, to a 1 scale where you could go either way. Come up with a legitimate number to assess your position. Suppose your
spouse is at a 7 and you are at a 4 then you agree to give in to the spouse’s 7 to make for a peaceful resolution.

SPLITTING THE DIFFERENCE

Another good way to resolve the argument is to simply compromise half way between the two points of view. Both parties feel like they got something and don’t feel humiliated.

The Ten Commandments for Fair Fighting

1. Never argue in front of the children, it harms and scares them.
2. Don’t ever hit your spouse.
3. Don’t curse at or call your spouse names, it is abusive.
4. Don’t attempt to get your way by bullying your spouse.
5. Don’t withhold sex to get your way.
6. Do not scream at your spouse it is abusive.
7. Do not interrupt; it is disrespectful, listen until they are done.
8. Do not take revenge for perceived hurts.
9. Develop a peacemaking attitude with questions like: How can we resolve this?
10. Don’t give people the “silent treatment”. It is revenge and it is emotionally abusive.
I have re-written an old nursery rhyme that is more appropriate: Sticks and stones can only break your bones but words can wound a spirit, break a heart or kill a relationship.

Remember, your job as a spouse is to nurture your spouse. You can’t do that when you are being self centered. According to Dr. Laura Schlesinger, self centeredness is a leading cause of divorce. You also don’t nurture your spouse when you attempt to bully them in an argument instead of peacefully resolving the conflict while respecting them and their feelings.

Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man (woman) be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: for the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. James 1:19

The big problem is that the vast majority of people don’t heed the above scriptural mandate. Most people are doing just the opposite: they are quick to anger, quick to speak and slow to listen. If you can follow the scriptural mandate, you will be amazed at how much better your marriage works.
SAVING FACE

You need to adopt the oriental philosophy of “saving face”. This is a philosophy of mutual respect. It is considered in very poor form to in any way deliberately disrespect another person. Their rules are very rigid in that you never ever would consider doing anything that would cause someone to feel humiliated or embarrassed. Our western culture clearly does not teach respect for other people’s feelings.

Finally, if you can’t resolve an argument, then seek out the services of a marriage coach. Avoid marriage counselors at all costs. The dirty little secret in the industry is that marriage counselors have a 75% failure rate according to some leading counselors turned Marriage Coaches like Dr. Willard Harley, author of HIS NEEDS, HER NEEDS and Michelle Weiner Davis, author of DIVORCE BUSTING. Marriage counselors have you come back for weeks and talk about feelings. Coaches concentrate on resolving problems in a short period of time. If
you need help, put into your search engine and look for marriage coaches, or just email me at marriagecoach1@yahoo.com


Here Are Some Great Survival Tips for Dating After Divorce For Men

February 19, 2012

Dating After Divorce Tips for Men

If you’re a man who has recently found himself sans wedding ring due to the legal termination of a marriage, you might be toying with the idea of dating again. But anyone (even you tough guys) who has been through a divorce knows that putting the goods back out on the market can be difficult and even a little intimidating. So before you do, be sure to check out the following tips to make the leap into the dating pool a successful swim that won’t leave you gasping for air and in need of CPR:

Take the time to get over it. Sure, you might think that the best way to heal an old wound is with a new band aid; but if you start dating new women before your divorce is even finalized, you could be setting yourself up for yet another serious disaster. When you get into a new relationship too soon, there is the threat of infecting your new relationship with issues from your past. So take the time you need to get over your marriage and focus on yourself for a little while in order to be the best you for the next lucky lady who strolls into your life.

Focus on the positives. Anyone who has been through the debilitating agony of a divorce knows that it has a way of completely tearing you down to a point where you feel like you can’t go on another day. Of course you’ve been through hell and there are bound to be times like this; but it is important to try and stay positive—especially when you are dating again. No new woman wants to sit there as you cry and complain about that gold-digging, two-timing ex-wife of yours who left you in financial and emotional ruins. Instead, talk about the parts of life that you enjoy, keep things light and do your best to let your positivity shine through—there is nothing more attractive to a woman than that.

Don’t compare. The whole point of dating is to explore what all is out there, right? So if you’re dating someone new and all you can think about is how she stacks up to the likes of your ex-wife, don’t expect for the new relationship to pan out successfully. The “ex” prefaces the word “wife” for a reason. Instead of judging the new lady in your life and writing her off just because she doesn’t cook your grilled cheese sandwiches just the way the former Mrs. did, embrace the opportunity you have to get to know someone new and accept them who they are—you never know, she just might be able to heat things up in the kitchen better than your ex used to!

Learn from your mistakes. When you reflect back on your marriage, there are sure to be some things that you wish you could change. And while you shouldn’t harp on the mistakes you made and focus only on what might have been with your ex-wife, you should however think about what you can do to make sure that you don’t fall into the same bad habits in your new relationship. Rather than living in the past, try to look at it as a learning experience to grow from and move on to a brighter, happier future.

One of the key things is learning to have peaceful conflict resolution without hurting your girlfriend or new wife. Here is a link to a great article to help you to do that. Peaceful conflict resolution is mandatory if you expect your new relationship to work.

http://www.spirituallyraw.com/profiles/blogs/the-holy-grail-how-to-stop-fighting-with-your-spouse-or-relatives

Another thing is that too many of you guys are still stuck in that old adolescent sexuality of wham bam thank you maam. You need to do it much better. Here is a link to make you into a hero in the bedroom. Believe me, women talk about your sexual performance. If you follow these sex tips, you will be better than 95% of the guys out there and the best that your woman has ever had and she will be much more accomodating of your sexual needs. Thank me later.
https://marriagecoach1.wordpress.com/2011/04/22/forreplay-and-afterplay-how-to-be-a-hero-in-the-bedroom/

And finally, most likely you will be dating women with kids and you need to learn how to deal with step kids. You must understand that they will not welcome you into the family. These kids are still grieving the loss of their parents as a family. They will do anything in their power to break you up and often succeed.

You need to have a meeting of the minds with your new woman and provide a united front to the kids both hers and yours.
One of the most common techniques in their little demon arsenal is saying: “you can’t tell me what to do, you are not my dad” or mom. The answer is simple. You say and get your woman to say as well, no I am not your dad, but I am a parent in this house and you have to do what I say because I am an adult charged with your care while you are over hear as well as your mom.

It would be a great idea to have a meeting with the kids and explain to them that you and your woman will not put up with these kinds of battles but they can have their say as long as it is respectful and then go over the rules of peaceful conflict resolution with them as well. If they break the rules there must be consequences to that. Have a family meeting with you and the woman and the kids and decide among yourselves what those consequences are. This will go a long way to insuring more domestic tranquility and preserving the relationship. Why don’t you email us with your tips on how to do it better.

Sabrina Jackson is a guest post author who shares her advice to men for dating post-divorce. In addition, Sabrina also contributes articles to Best Dating Sites where she provides information about safe dating on the web.
http://www.100bestdatingsites.org


Marriage Counseling Versus Coaching, Choose Coaching If You Want Results

January 23, 2012

Marriage Counseling Versus Marriage Coaching

COACHING VERSUS COUNSELING

There is a dirty little secret in the marriage counseling industry. 75% of all couples who go to marriage counseling end up being divorced. There is a quiet revolution taking place in this country where some forward thinking counselors are abandoning the traditional counseling methods and adopting a “coaching” style. A couple of well known counselors have made the transition like Michelle Weiner Davis, author of: DIVORCE BUSTING and Dr. Willard Harley, author of HIS NEEDS HER NEEDS.

Part of the problem is how services are delivered. One hour once a week is insufficient to do the job. Another part of the problem is philosophy of treatment. Counseling concentrates on couples talking about their feelings. Coaching concentrates on resolving the problem.

Think about this for a minute. If couples seek out marriage counseling, the marriage is likely in deep trouble where the stress level is such that they are considering divorce. Now think about the “medical model” for a minute: If you had serious heart trouble, would you want to go to a cardiologist whose record is that 3 out of 4 patients under his care die? If you had a very serious life threatening cut, would you be happy with a doctor who said, I am going to put one stitch in you now, and you come back in week and I will put another stitch in you and keep coming back once a week for the next 20 weeks and we will have you all stitched up? If you had Strep Throat would you be happy with a doctor who says that he will give you a little antibiotic and keep coming back for 20 weeks until the infection is cleared up? Would you want accept any of those treatment plans

Would you accept firemen coming out to your house and telling you that they are going to put a little of the fire out and that they would come back the next week and put a little more of the fire out and keep coming back until the fire is out? There is no other profession that attempts to resolve a problem utilizing this paradigm.

The reason that it is done this way is not because it is what is best for the patients, but it is what is best for the insurance industry who will only reimburse for one hour once a week. Actuaries (these are guys who are the bean counters for the insurance companies) have figured out that couples will abandon the process long before they resolve the problem thus saving the insurance company money.

Another part of the problem is the philosophy of counseling style where the counselor assumes a neutral position. Mediation services don’t follow this style. The mediator takes two opposing sides and takes charge and is a referee suggesting alternative solutions to both sides and maintains order during the process. They also roll up their sleeves and over the course of several hours resolves the problems or makes great strides in resolving the problem in a minimum of sessions in a very short period of time. Couples don’t need to talk about their feelings, they need to resolve the problems. They need to be taught relationship skills. There is an old Chinese proverb which states: “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”. Couples need to be taught conflict resolution skills which do not come naturally. What comes naturally is fighting.

Going back to the medical model, you don’t leave a patient with a high fever for weeks at a time, you treat the fever and what is causing the fever in a short period of time. Couples in crisis are having the equivalent of serious fever. They are in stress because the “Fight or Flight Syndrome” causes huge adrenaline rushes which can’t be easily sustained over weeks of time. The stress is very hard on the body and is a leading cause of heart disease. The collateral damage happens to the children in the family. The toxic mood in the house is equivalent to torture for them because they are helpless and can’t do anything about it.

Clearly the treatment model for counseling needs a paradigm shift. We need to first resolve the problems in a short period of time, teach couples conflict resolution skills and relational skills and to lobby the insurance industry to adopt a different reimbursement model. Insurance companies need to pay for hours of service rendered and not dictate to the counselor how he structures the time element in the therapy.

As a couple, you need to seek out a marriage coach to help you resolve your problems. You will have to pay for it out of your own pocket, but it is a much more effective therapy and far cheaper than divorce.

Most coaches will deal with couples by phone or on the internet by Individual Messenger (IM).This saves time and money. Many couples don’t like to drive to an office. This way you can deal with your problems in the comfort of your own home .


How To Confront Someone As Explained in The Bible

December 5, 2011

There is a right way and a wrong way to rebuke anyone but especially a fellow
Christian.

Finally, be you all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brothers, be pitiful, courteous
Not rendering evil for evil or railing for railing: but contrariwise, blessing; knowing that you are
thereunto called, that you should inherit a blessing. I Peter 3:8-9

Many people become very prideful and arrogant. Here is what the bible says about that:

Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.
The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God I thank you that I am not as
other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers and even as this publican. I fast twice
in a week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not life up so
much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote his breast saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
I tell you , this man went down to his house justified rather than the other, For every one who exalts himself
shall be abased, and he that humbles himself shall be exalted. Luke 18:10-14

Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. Better is it to be of a humble
spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. Proverbs 16-18-19

Here is what the Bible commands for us to live together in peace:

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem each
other better than themselves. Look not every man (woman) on his own things but every man
also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.
Phillipians 2:3-5

Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men
of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. Recompense no man evil for evil.
Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lies in you,
live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place
unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine and I will repay says the Lord. Romans
12:16-19

Be not overcome with evil but overcome evil with good.
Romans 16:21

Brethern if a man be overtaken in a fault, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in the
spirit in the spirit of meekness; considering yourself, let you also be tempted. Bear you one
anothers burdens and so fulfill the Law of Christ. For if a man thinks himself to be
something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. Galatians 6:1-4

Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good
to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve
not the Holy Spirit of God, wherebye you were sealed unto the day of redemption.
Let all bitterness, and wrath and anger and clamor and evil speaking, be put away
from you, with all malice. And be you kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one
another, even as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:29-32

Speak not evil of one another brethern. He that speaks evil of his brother and judges
his brother, speaks evil of the Law and judges the law: but if you judge the law, you are not
a doer of the law, but a judge. There is one lawgiver who is able to save and to destroy;
who are you to judge another? James 4:11-12

Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasts great things. Behold, how great a
matter a little fire kindles. And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members,
that it defiles the whole body and sets on fire the course of nature and it is set on fire of hell
James 3:5-6

Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him show out of a good conversation
his works with meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not and lie
not against the truth. This wisdom descends not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where there is envying and strife, there is confusion and every evil work. But the wisdom from above
is first pure, then peaceable , gentle and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without
hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace. James 3:13-18

He who hates his brother is a murderer: and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him I John 3:15


The Holy Grail, How To Stop Fighting with your Spouse and Relatives

September 1, 2011

This blog post was reposted on the Spiraturally Raw Website and thanks to April for posting it.
John Wilder

All Blog PostsMy BlogAddTHE HOLY GRAIL! How To STOP FIGHTING With Your Spouse or Relatives & Conflict RESOLUTION SKILLS!!! Posted by April Villarose-Matta on September 1, 2011 at 1:00pm
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How To Stop Fighting With Your Spouse or Relatives, Good Conflict Resolution Skills

Nothing kills your sex life and hurts your relationship like fighting. It is imperative for the health and continuation of your relationship to learn to resolve conflict peacefully. I always tell my relationship and sexual coaching clients to go home and rent two movies and study them: THE BREAKUP and WAR OF THE ROSES. It is another example of art illustrating and imitating life. Now there is no such thing as a couple who are going to agree on everything.

The key to a good relationship is being able to resolve those differences without hurting each other and inflicting damage on the relationship. Learning to resolve differences peacefully is one of the keys to having a good relationship and great sex life.

QUESTION: Are you combative or collaborative?

Do you want to win the fight or resolve the problem?

ATTACK THE PROBLEM, NOT YOUR PARTNER!

Ask, “In what way can we solve this problem?”

When you attack your spouse, they tend to want to counter attack which only escalates the problem. Instead of accusing your partner, Make the problem and its solution mutual rather than a contest and argument.

Resolve Differences Quickly

Let not the sun go down on your wrath. Ephesians 4:26 This passage from the Bible is obvious and requires no interpretation. It is a simple command to resolve differences quickly. The reason for this should be obvious. You know when you and your spouse are fighting, the mood is toxic. It stresses and damages the relationship. There is another reason: your children sense the tenseness or worse yet see you fighting. It scares them and they have no way to resolve it, make it better or the ability to get away from it. This is literally torture for your children. It upsets their digestion, their sleep, and their emotional well being. Fighting in front of children is never okay. If you really need to have a fight, find a way to get the children somewhere else where they don’t witness it.

There is a syndrome called Fight or Flight Syndrome. This is a coping system in people and animals. Men tend to feel it more profoundly because of the testosterone in their systems and because nature gives them a strong “protector instinct”. What happens when you feel stressed and threatened, the body releases massive amounts of adrenaline in your body. The purpose of this adrenaline is a simple survival mechanism. The idea is that you can use the adrenaline to run away from your opponent or predator faster than they can chase you and catch you. The other option is that you have so much adrenaline in you that you are able to successfully fight off an enemy or predator. The body is designed to be releasing and dissipating this adrenaline by either fighting or fleeing in a very short period of time. When you do neither, it creates a tremendous amount of stress in you that is not good for the body. It is internalized. Imagine having the need to urinate or sneeze and you can’t do it and you are stuck. It is a miserable feeling. In fact this kind of unrelieved stress is one of the main causes of heart disease and heart attack. When you internalize this stress rather than venting it through fighting or fleeing, you do a lot damage to the body and the relationship. Many times violence can ensue especially with men. This is why the Bible is so clear and unequivocal about resolving conflict and resolving it quickly. Here is another scripture verse to back that notion up:

Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother (friend, wife, husband, other relative) has anything against you; Leave there your gift before the altar, and go your way; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Mathew 5:23-24

In other words it is so important to resolve the problem immediately because of how an argument can fester and get out of hand that Christ commands that you leave church in the middle of the service to go and reconcile the problem.

LOSE YOUR TEMPER

People will often say that they lost their temper. In fact, they used their temper. Couples often use anger to control and manipulate each other, usually one is stronger than the other and bullies their partner with their anger. Men because of their superior strength tend to use that strength to bully the wife and sometimes hit the wife. This is unhealthy for the relationship and is inexcusable according to the following biblical passages:

Likewise you husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. I Peter 3:7

God gave us men superior strength so as to use it to protect our wives and family, not use it against her. Men note the message at the end of the verse; if you misuse your strength against your wife, God will not answer or heed your prayers. That is a powerful warning that is not nearly emphasized enough in churches or Sunday schools today. There is far too much violence against women. I believe that the disrespect and violence against women by men is in large part responsible for the rise of feminism in this country. While feminism has in this writer’s opinion swung entirely too far the other way, one should not dismiss the feminist notions as completely without merit. There were and are legitimate causes for anger on the part of women. The Christian response to some of these concerns was another movement called: Promise Keepers. It is a Christian men’s organization whose principle tenants are that we as men need to be better husbands, fathers and Christian leaders.

Here are scriptures relating to anger especially notable to men.

Cease from anger and forsake wrath. Psalm 37:8

A wrathful man stirs up strife; but he that is slow to anger appeases strife. Proverbs 15:18

Women you also have a responsibility to keep a happy and peaceful home. There are numerous commands in the Bible regulating your conduct with your spouse as well. The following verse is representative of those commands.

The contentions of a wife are like a continual dripping. Proverbs 19:13 In other words like a continual dripping faucet.

We can all agree that men should not physically beat on women. Many times as indicated in the above biblical passages, women don’t have a problem beating verbally on men. The problem is, not only does it hurt your relationship but is very problematic for the husband for a number of reasons. By verbally beating on the husband, you cause the fight or flight syndrome to turn on and gives him tremendous unresolved stress. When the argument goes on, it makes it worse for the man and he gets more and more stressed to where he can explode and hit the wife. Your children are also stressed in this way. They feel the stress of that same Fight or Flight Syndrome and they are powerless to do anything about it. Continued stress of this type can cause heart disease and heart attack.
So the Bible is pretty explicit that hasty anger is not good for relationships and that anger needs to be controlled. Anger is not to be used to beat someone with or to get our own way by manipulating and intimidating them.

However the Bible does not say that you can’t get angry. You can get angry, but you have to control the anger:

Be angry and sin not. Ephesians 4:26

So you see that anger is a human emotion, but you must control it, not use it as a weapon but express it so as to resolve the problem. Often when a person gets angry, they start yelling and raising their voice. This is simply a ploy to try and scare someone or attempt to manipulate someone. This is not an appropriate use or expression of anger. Screaming is an equal opportunity sin by both men and women. It also causes the Fight or Flight Syndrome that was previously spoken about. Invariably when one person yells, then the other person responds in kind which simply escalates the argument and gets it to the point where people are out of control. Here is what the Bible says about that:

A soft answer turns away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.

So how do you keep peace with your spouse when there is anger over an issue?

The key is to keep emotion out of it. The first rule when your partner is angry about something is to SHUT-UP AND LISTEN.

You let them get everything out that is bothering them. Now the temptation here is to interrupt them and correct them over an issue that you feel like they are unjustly accusing you of. False accusations are not that abnormal as people tend to over-reach when they are angry. You wait until they are completely done before you try and correct them. The key is that you want the spouse to get out all of their frustrations. If you interrupt them, it just makes them madder. You keep quiet until they are done. Once you feel like they are done, you ask them if they are done. Sometimes, they are just taking a breath and re-grouping their thoughts. If they have more to say, listen. If it is a lot, take notes on what they are complaining about so you don’t forget or try to interrupt them to tell them you can’t remember everything that they said. Once they assure you that they are done, then you ask them if it would be okay for you to repeat back the main points of their argument so that you are sure that you understand and don’t want to forget anything. Usually they will be tickled to do that. Once you have re-stated the case, ask them if this is everything that they talked about. Once they have agreed that you have all of their points. You then go to the next step. The next step is to ask them: “in what way can I fix this and make it right? There is nothing to argue about with this point. They will usually have an idea on what you can do to make it right and they will tell you. You can then go back and correct what you feel like they unfairly accused you of. You avoid sarcasm and raising your voice, you simply quietly state that you disagree with the point that you feel like they unjustly accused you of. Now if what they are asking for is unreasonable, you counter offer and suggest that you feel like that what they are asking for is too much but you are willing to counter offer a solution. You then can begin negotiating the solution to the problem. If you can take the anger and attacks out of the argument and make it about problem solving, it is much easier to resolve.

AVOID THE “YOU DO IT TOO” RESPONSE

You need to address the complaint of your spouse and deal with it responsibly instead of trying to say they do the same thing or something else similar. Once that the conflict is resolved to your mate’s satisfaction, then if you have complaints ask to take your turn at voicing your complaints.

NEGOTIATING CONFLICT

There is a good way to negotiate. You can say: “alright on a scale of 1-10 how do you rate this?” If your partner says for them it is an 8 and for you it is only a 4, you agree to give them their way. Again this is just about problem solving rather than attacking each other. You can always propose an alternative solution. In assessing the degree of the problem, you have to be honest. You can’t just claim it is a 10 all of the time. You have to honestly rate the severity of the problem as well as the spouse has to rate it honestly. Make allowances for whoever has the bigger problem. This is peaceful productive problem solving.

AGREE TO DISAGREE

There are times that you are just diametrically opposed to their proposed solution and the two of you can’t reach an agreement. You could start beating on each other emotionally or you could “agree to disagree”. There is nothing wrong with that. In this way, no one is wrong, you are both convinced that you are both right but neither party will concede. Just agree to disagree.

Flipping a Coin To Decide the Problem

If negotiating has not worked and the person is still adamant that they want a solution the Bible has a solution: “The lot causes contentions to cease and parts the mighty.” Proverbs 18:18.

When getting to a solution is imperative and neither side will budge then the only peaceful solution is to settle it by a flip of the coin. Casting lots was a dice game, but a modern day corollary would be a flip of the coin to settle the issue. You both have to agree and stick by it.

And Jesus said: Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God. Mathew 5:9

Due to the sinful nature of man, we have a natural predilection to fight among ourselves. Being a peacemaker contributes positively to society at large and families in particular. Will you endeavor to be a peacemaker in your own home?

And a further biblical note:

If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18

You can’t make anyone do right, but you can control how you react and what you put into the relationship. Are you doing everything that you can in your relationship to live peaceably with your spouse?

DEALING WITH A SPOUSE WHO WON’T STOP YELLING

If you are faced with a partner that yells and gets verbally abusive and won’t be calmed down and this is habitual, you have to make a change. You can’t force the person to behave appropriately. What you can do is to remove yourself form the situation. You simply go get your keys and get in the car and leave for several hours. Don’t answer your cell phone or texts from the person demanding that you come back. After several hours, you come back home and tell the person that you will talk if they are willing to talk to you without verbally abusing you and yelling at you. If they start in again, you simply leave again and stay overnight somewhere if necessary. It is not likely that you will have to do this more than 3 times and the person will realize that you are no longer going to put up with the abuse. If you don’t take a stand and make it stick, the abusive person will continue the abuse.

The Ten Commandments for Fair Fighting

1. Never argue in front of the children, it harms and scares them.
2. Don’t ever hit your spouse.
3. Don’t call your spouse names or use insulting or demeaning language to them, it is abusive.
4. Don’t attempt to get your way by bullying your spouse.
5. Don’t withhold sex to get your way.
6. Do not scream at your spouse.
7. Do not interrupt, it is disrespectful, listen until they are done.
8. Do not take revenge for perceived hurts.
9. Develop a peacemaking attitude with questions like: How can we resolve this?
10. Don’t give people the “silent treatment”. It is revenge and it is emotionally abusive.

I have re-written an old nursery rhyme to a more appropriate meaning:

Sticks and stones can only break your bones, but words can wound a spirit, break a heart or kill a relationship.

When you can’t resolve the problems between the two of you then seek out the services of a mediator, or a relationship coach.

Or just email me at marriagecoach1@yahoo.com

John Wilder


How To Stop Fighting With Your Spouse

August 10, 2011

How To Stop Fighting With Your Spouse or Relatives, Good Conflict Resolution Skills

Nothing kills your sex life and hurts your relationship like fighting. It is imperative for the health and continuation of your relationship to learn to resolve conflict peacefully. I always tell my relationship and sexual coaching clients to go home and rent two movies and study them: THE BREAKUP and WAR OF THE ROSES. It is another example of art illustrating and imitating life. Now there is no such thing as a couple who are going to agree on everything. The key to a good relationship is being able to resolve those differences without hurting each other and inflicting damage on the relationship. Learning to resolve differences peacefully is one of the keys to having a good relationship and great sex life.

QUESTION: Are you combative or collaborative?
Do you want to win the fight or resolve the problem?

ATTACK THE PROBLEM, NOT YOUR PARTNER! Ask, “In what way can we solve this problem?”

When you attack your spouse, they tend to want to counter attack which only escalates the problem. Instead of accusing your partner, Make the problem and its solution mutual rather than a contest and argument.

Resolve Differences Quickly

Let not the sun go down on your wrath. Ephesians 4:26 This passage from the Bible is obvious and requires no interpretation. It is a simple command to resolve differences quickly. The reason for this should be obvious. You know when you and your spouse are fighting, the mood is toxic. It stresses and damages the relationship. There is another reason: your children sense the tenseness or worse yet see you fighting. It scares them and they have no way to resolve it, make it better or the ability to get away from it. This is literally torture for your children. It upsets their digestion, their sleep, and their emotional well being. Fighting in front of children is never okay. If you really need to have a fight, find a way to get the children somewhere else where they don’t witness it.

There is a syndrome called Fight or Flight Syndrome. This is a coping system in people and animals. Men tend to feel it more profoundly because of the testosterone in their systems and because nature gives them a strong “protector instinct”. What happens when you feel stressed and threatened, the body releases massive amounts of adrenaline in your body. The purpose of this adrenaline is a simple survival mechanism. The idea is that you can use the adrenaline to run away from your opponent or predator faster than they can chase you and catch you. The other option is that you have so much adrenaline in you that you are able to successfully fight off an enemy or predator. The body is designed to be releasing and dissipating this adrenaline by either fighting or fleeing in a very short period of time. When you do neither, it creates a tremendous amount of stress in you that is not good for the body. It is internalized. Imagine having the need to urinate or sneeze and you can’t do it and you are stuck. It is a miserable feeling. In fact this kind of unrelieved stress is one of the main causes of heart disease and heart attack. When you internalize this stress rather than venting it through fighting or fleeing, you do a lot damage to the body and the relationship. Many times violence can ensue especially with men. This is why the Bible is so clear and unequivocal about resolving conflict and resolving it quickly. Here is another scripture verse to back that notion up:

Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother (friend, wife, husband, other relative) has anything against you; Leave there your gift before the altar, and go your way; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Mathew 5:23-24

In other words it is so important to resolve the problem immediately because of how an argument can fester and get out of hand that Christ commands that you leave church in the middle of the service to go and reconcile the problem.

LOSE YOUR TEMPER

People will often say that they lost their temper. In fact, they used their temper. Couples often use anger to control and manipulate each other, usually one is stronger than the other and bullies their partner with their anger. Men because of their superior strength tend to use that strength to bully the wife and sometimes hit the wife. This is unhealthy for the relationship and is inexcusable according to the following biblical passages:

Likewise you husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. I Peter 3:7

God gave us men superior strength so as to use it to protect our wives and family, not use it against her. Men note the message at the end of the verse; if you misuse your strength against your wife, God will not answer or heed your prayers. That is a powerful warning that is not nearly emphasized enough in churches or Sunday schools today. There is far too much violence against women. I believe that the disrespect and violence against women by men is in large part responsible for the rise of feminism in this country. While feminism has in this writer’s opinion swung entirely too far the other way, one should not dismiss the feminist notions as completely without merit. There were and are legitimate causes for anger on the part of women. The Christian response to some of these concerns was another movement called: Promise Keepers. It is a Christian men’s organization whose principle tenants are that we as men need to be better husbands, fathers and Christian leaders.

Here are scriptures relating to anger especially notable to men.

Cease from anger and forsake wrath. Psalm 37:8
A wrathful man stirs up strife; but he that is slow to anger appeases strife. Proverbs 15:18

Women you also have a responsibility to keep a happy and peaceful home. There are numerous commands in the Bible regulating your conduct with your spouse as well. The following verse is representative of those commands.

The contentions of a wife are like a continual dripping. Proverbs 19:13 In other words like a continual dripping faucet.

We can all agree that men should not physically beat on women. Many times as indicated in the above biblical passages, women don’t have a problem beating verbally on men. The problem is, not only does it hurt your relationship but is very problematic for the husband for a number of reasons. By verbally beating on the husband, you cause the fight or flight syndrome to turn on and gives him tremendous unresolved stress. When the argument goes on, it makes it worse for the man and he gets more and more stressed to where he can explode and hit the wife. Your children are also stressed in this way. They feel the stress of that same Fight or Flight Syndrome and they are powerless to do anything about it. Continued stress of this type can cause heart disease and heart attack.
So the Bible is pretty explicit that hasty anger is not good for relationships and that anger needs to be controlled. Anger is not to be used to beat someone with or to get our own way by manipulating and intimidating them. However the Bible does not say that you can’t get angry. You can get angry, but you have to control the anger:

Be angry and sin not. Ephesians 4:26

So you see that anger is a human emotion, but you must control it, not use it as a weapon but express it so as to resolve the problem. Often when a person gets angry, they start yelling and raising their voice. This is simply a ploy to try and scare someone or attempt to manipulate someone. This is not an appropriate use or expression of anger. Screaming is an equal opportunity sin by both men and women. It also causes the Fight or Flight Syndrome that was previously spoken about. Invariably when one person yells, then the other person responds in kind which simply escalates the argument and gets it to the point where people are out of control. Here is what the Bible says about that:

A soft answer turns away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.

So how do you keep peace with your spouse when there is anger over an issue. The key is to keep emotion out of it. The first rule when your partner is angry about something is to SHUT-UP AND LISTEN. You let them get everything out that is bothering them. Now the temptation here is to interrupt them and correct them over an issue that you feel like they are unjustly accusing you of. False accusations are not that abnormal as people tend to over-reach when they are angry. You wait until they are completely done before you try and correct them. The key is that you want the spouse to get out all of their frustrations. If you interrupt them, it just makes them madder. You keep quiet until they are done. Once you feel like they are done, you ask them if they are done. Sometimes, they are just taking a breath and re-grouping their thoughts. If they have more to say, listen. If it is a lot, take notes on what they are complaining about so you don’t forget or try to interrupt them to tell them you can’t remember everything that they said. Once they assure you that they are done, then you ask them if it would be okay for you to repeat back the main points of their argument so that you are sure that you understand and don’t want to forget anything. Usually they will be tickled to do that. Once you have re-stated the case, ask them if this is everything that they talked about. Once they have agreed that you have all of their points. You then go to the next step. The next step is to ask them: “in what way can I fix this and make it right? There is nothing to argue about with this point. They will usually have an idea on what you can do to make it right and they will tell you. You can then go back and correct what you feel like they unfairly accused you of. You avoid sarcasm and raising your voice, you simply quietly state that you disagree with the point that you feel like they unjustly accused you of. Now if what they are asking for is unreasonable, you counter offer and suggest that you feel like that what they are asking for is too much but you are willing to counter offer a solution. You then can begin negotiating the solution to the problem. If you can take the anger and attacks out of the argument and make it about problem solving, it is much easier to resolve.

AVOID THE “YOU DO IT TOO” RESPONSE

You need to address the complaint of your spouse and deal with it responsibly instead of trying to say they do the same thing or something else similar. Once that the conflict is resolved to your mate’s satisfaction, then if you have complaints ask to take your turn at voicing your complaints.

NEGOTIATING CONFLICT

There is a good way to negotiate. You can say: “alright on a scale of 1-10 how do you rate this?” If your partner says for them it is an 8 and for you it is only a 4, you agree to give them their way. Again this is just about problem solving rather than attacking each other. You can always propose an alternative solution. In assessing the degree of the problem, you have to be honest. You can’t just claim it is a 10 all of the time. You have to honestly rate the severity of the problem as well as the spouse has to rate it honestly. Make allowances for whoever has the bigger problem. This is peaceful productive problem solving.

AGREE TO DISAGREE

There are times that you are just diametrically opposed to their proposed solution and the two of you can’t reach an agreement. You could start beating on each other emotionally or you could “agree to disagree”. There is nothing wrong with that. In this way, no one is wrong, you are both convinced that you are both right but neither party will concede. Just agree to disagree.

FLIPPING A COIN TO SOLVE THE PROBLEM

If negotiating has not worked and the person is still adamant that they want a solution the Bible has a solution: “The lot causes contentions to cease and parts the mighty.” Proverbs 18:18.

When getting to a solution is imperative and neither side will budge then the only peaceful solution is to settle it by a flip of the coin. Casting lots was a dice game, but a modern day corollary would be a flip of the coin to settle the issue. You both have to agree and stick by it.

And Jesus said: Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God. Mathew 5:9 Due to the sinful nature of man, we have a natural predilection to fight among ourselves. Being a peacemaker contributes positively to society at large and families in particular. Will you endeavor to be a peacemaker in your own home? And a further biblical note:
If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18 You can’t make anyone do right, but you can control how you react and what you put into the relationship. Are you doing everything that you can in your relationship to live peaceably with your spouse?

DEALING WITH A SPOUSE WHO WON’T STOP YELLING

If you are faced with a partner that yells and gets verbally abusive and won’t be calmed down and this is habitual, you have to make a change. You can’t force the person to behave appropriately. What you can do is to remove yourself form the situation. You simply go get your keys and get in the car and leave for several hours. Don’t answer your cell phone or texts from the person demanding that you come back. After several hours, you come back home and tell the person that you will talk if they are willing to talk to you without verbally abusing you and yelling at you. If they start in again, you simply leave again and stay overnight somewhere if necessary. It is not likely that you will have to do this more than 3 times and the person will realize that you are no longer going to put up with the abuse. If you don’t take a stand and make it stick, the abusive person will continue the abuse.

The Ten Commandments for Fair Fighting

1. Never argue in front of the children, it harms and scares them.
2. Don’t ever hit your spouse.
3. Don’t call your spouse names or use insulting or demeaning language to them, it is abusive.
4. Don’t attempt to get your way by bullying your spouse.
5. Don’t withhold sex to get your way.
6. Do not scream at your spouse.
7. Do not interrupt, it is disrespectful, listen until they are done.
8. Do not take revenge for perceived hurts.
9. Develop a peacemaking attitude with questions like: How can we resolve this?
10. Don’t give people the “silent treatment”. It is revenge and it is emotionally abusive.

I have re-written an old nursery rhyme to a more appropriate meaning:

Sticks and stones can only break your bones, but words can wound a spirit, break a heart or kill a relationship.

When you can’t resolve the problems between the two of you then seek out the services of a mediator, or a relationship coach.

Or just email me at marriagecoach1@yahoo.com


Solving Anger Issues, Another Great Guest Blog

July 8, 2010

Here is another great guest post worth heeding. Anger is a dangerous weapon and kills a lot of relationships and spirits Pay attention to this blog on how to deal with your anger.

The Antidote to Anger

This is the lin to the blog to Stay Happily Married

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The Karma Series, Part 2
After attending meditation class for a few weeks, I asked my teacher, “Could you do a series on parenting? Because I have a lot of trouble with that. You see, my daughter whines, and it drives me crazy. I don’t want it to drive me crazy, but it does. That whining sound just irritates every cell in my body, and before I know it something has snapped and I’ve turned into an angry person who I am not proud of. Do you have a solution for that? Can Buddhism help me?”

She smiled and, as if she were sharing one of the world’s greatest secrets, lowered her voice and said, “Yes, it’s called patience.”

I stared at her for a few empty seconds. She stared at me and smiled.

“Patience?”

“Yes,” she said. “We’re doing a series on patience next month.”

I thought, “Really? That’s the best you’ve got? Patience? No Captain Spock grip that I can put on myself to stop the anger? No mantra that I can say over and over again? No special meditation technique? Just patience?”

It took the better part of a year before I understood that she was right. It took lessons on impermanence, compassion, emptiness, self-cherishing, attachments, karma and more. It took me meditating nearly every day, twice a day. (More on that in a future post. It’s not as taxing as it might initially seem). It took nearly a year.

But eventually I realized that she was right. Patience is the antidote to anger.

What follows is the story of the night that led me to fully understand that teaching.

The Day I Did Not Lose My Patience
It was two weeks ago. We’d just returned from vacationing in Colorado, where I had become incredibly lax about my daughter’s diet. By the end of the trip, the girl’s primary food groups had been donuts, chips, fries and Mac-n-Cheese.

That, of course, could not go on forever. Otherwise she’d develop diabetes, heart disease, and cancer by her 18th birthday.

So, upon our return, I made a decision about dinner. It was this. I was only cooking one meal, this one meal was going to be healthy, and she was going to eat it or she was going to go hungry.

I might add here that, in retrospect, the timing of my Dinnertime Intervention could have been better. My daughter’s sleep schedule was all bollixed up from the time change. She’d been awake until 11 pm the night before, and then I’d woken her at 7 am that morning to get her off to summer camp.

If you are a parent, then you might be able to see where this is headed. If you are not a parent, here’s a hint. Kids who don’t get enough sleep have a tendency to morph into something resembling the Tasmanian Devil from Looney Tunes.

So here we were coming up on dinnertime. My daughter asked, “What’s for dinner?” I said, “Corn on the cob and…”

She cut me off. “I hate corn on the cob!”

I said, “Oh, that’s too bad.”

I plated everything up, and I served it.

She took one look at her plate and said, “I. Don’t. Like. Corn. And. I. Hate. Chicken!”

She had steak on her plate, not chicken, but I knew that information would be wasted on her in that moment.

“You don’t have to eat anything if you don’t want to.”

“Can I have dessert?!” [Read this with a loud whiny voice].

“No.”

“But I don’t LIKE corn!” [Remember, whiny voice]

“You know the rules. If you don’t eat your dinner, no dessert.”

She morphed into the Tasmanian Devil. I sent her to her room. I ate my corn and steak in relative calm.

She returned a short while later.

“Are you ready to eat?”

“No!”

She got whiny and sassy, so I sent her back to her room.

I could hear her screaming. I could hear her sobbing. I could hear her telling her stuffed animals that I was the worst mommy on the planet.

I smiled. “This moment isn’t going to last forever,” I reminded myself. “She’s not going to hate me forever because I made corn on the cob for dinner. Stay strong. Stay calm. You just have to wait this out. “

You just need to be patient.

And, then, I had one of those, “Dang, so that’s what she was talking about a year ago” moments.

My daughter’s Tasmanian fit went on for more than an hour that night. At one point she sneaked out of her room and into the kitchen so she could erase my name off a picture she’d once drawn for me. At another point she came out with red eyes and stared me down. I asked, “Can I give you a hug?” She screamed, “No!”

I said, “When you are ready, I’d love a hug.”

“I hate corn!” she yelled and then ran back to her room.

She emerged some time later and said, “I want dessert!”

I said, “I’m sorry, but that’s not happening and you know why.”

I sent her back to her room a few more times, telling her that she could come out again when she could talk without whining and without getting sassy.

She emerged a few more times with the whine and with the sass, so I sent her back.

I looked at the clock a few times. I thought, “I can’t believe this is going on this long.”

I did wonder at one point whether she would ever calm down. It did cross my mind that perhaps my daughter had just entered some new Mommy Hating Phase of Life, one that might last an entire year.

Then, at some point, it occurred to me that she might stay whiny and sassy for years—perhaps into adulthood—and that this phase would never end and my only respite would be the day that I finally died from the pain of it all.

So I again reminded myself to be patient. I reminded myself that all hardships—even this one—eventually come to an end. Nothing lasts forever, not even a sassy fit. Everything is impermanent.

After about an hour and a half, the energy in the house shifted. My daughter walked up to me and stared at me with these pitiful eyes. I asked, “Do you want a hug?” She said, “Yes.” She crawled on my lap. Her tears spilled onto my shirt. I said, “I’m sorry we had such a bad night.”

She said, “We had a bad night because you yelled at me!”

This time, for once, I had not yelled at her. In the past? Yes, I’ve yelled. This time? No, I had not. This time I had been calm. This time I had loved every little molecule of her being—even the sassy molecules—the entire time. I had not lost it. I had not been angry.

I’d been patient. And, now, I still was.

“I’m sorry if you heard me yell at you. I love you more than anything in the entire world. I never want you to be sad.”

We hugged for a good 10 minutes.

And then she ate her corn on the cob.

And then she wrote my name back on the picture. She used a pen because, she said, you can’t erase pen.


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