Two weeks ago, in my post, “How to have it out without making it worse,” we began to look at Brian Orme’s advice on how to deal with conflict. We covered the things he warns to avoid in marital disputes. The reality is that there are things we can do that inevitably hurt rather than help our chances of resolving issues that come up in marriage. Today we look at the positive side: his list of things to do to make our clashes more constructive.
Last week’s post about, “How to Have It Out Without Making It Worse,” generated a lot of good interaction. One person asked about the challenge not to go to bed angry. While most people would agree with the principle, the struggle is what to do when an issue can’t be solved in one day. If I’m angry with my spouse, does that mean I can’t ever go to bed?
Marriage can be wonderful, but conflict is usually part of the equation. There are differences to work out, hurts to deal with, and misunderstandings to overcome. Some people will barge into conflict with little concern for how it hurts the other person. Other people will bottle their feelings in until they’re ready to explode. Either way, the consequences can be devastating. Learning how to deal effectively with conflict in a marriage can be helped by laying down some simple ground rules on how to fight fair. I was helped by Brian Orme’s article in this regard. He gives five do’s and five don’ts for more constructive conflicts. This week, we’ll look at the five things to avoid.