Whether you’re a single parent, divorced, married, or hoping to be married, please read on. This is for you.
Kids don’t like hearing their parents fight. Fighting means trouble. If your marriage is full of trouble, you can stop. Fighting’s not good for your kids. It’s not good for you. It’s not good for your spouse either. Do you remember your first fight? Perhaps it gives you a headache just thinking about it. Let’s find out how one young couple dealt with their first spat.
Marilyn and Jim’s First Marriage Argument
Our friends, Marilyn and Jim, are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. We first met Marilyn when she and her husband were raising 3 teenagers.
Recently we met for lunch. I asked them, “What’s the bond that keeps you together?”
We married right out of high school,” said Marilyn. “I thought, ‘If Jim truly loves me, he’ll know what I’m thinking.'”
After their first spat, Marilyn headed for the front steps and slammed the door behind her. Pouting like a hurt child, she sat down and waited for Jim to apologize. She waited, and waited, and waited.
Marilyn didn’t know Jim was inside watching a football game. When he finally came out, he told her, “Come inside. This isn’t Ozzie and Harriet (a popular TV program at the time). We need to talk.”
Marilyn learned to speak up:
Marilyn became the officer manager for my husband’s and my counseling practices; we teased her about her ‘hit list.’ They were clients who didn’t pay their bills. Combining tact and assertiveness, Marilyn was a master at getting them to pay. Of course, by then she knew the 3 magic solutions
First Magic Marriage Solution – Let Go of Mind Reading
Stop mind reading. You can guess but you can’t read anyone’s mind. Sometimes your guesses are close. Much of the time, they’re wrong.
If you’re not good at mind reading, neither is your partner. Nobody is. Use your reason and let go of mind reading. You’ll both be happier.
Second Magic Marriage Solution – Choose What to Say
Think wisely. Stop overheating your mind with self pitying thoughts. Stop nursing your wounded heart.
Choose specific words that your partner can accept. Make sure they aren’t hurtful or you’ll lose. Be kind and direct in choosing what to say.
Third Magic Marriage Solution – Speak up and Do It Right
Talk clearly. Ask a direct question without accusing. Discuss a specific behavior and say how you felt. Tell your partner what you would like.
One more thing, don’t drown your spouse in words. Talking too much drives your listener to distraction. Pretty soon your partner won’t hear you. Speak up and do it right.
Magic Marriage Conclusion – The 3 Solutions for Avoiding Mind Reading and Fights
Why are these 3 solutions magic? Like the art of magic, they take time, patience, and practice to learn.
Next time, when you’re tempted to fight, practice a little magic. Stop mind reading. Use your reason. Choose what to say and speak up.
You won’t be slamming doors. Your children won’t fear your marriage is in trouble. They won’t be getting headaches either. Best of all, you’ll be solving problems and getting more of what you want and need.
The above true story is an excerpt from Jean Tracy’s e-Book, Parents in Love – 121 Dating Ideas. In it you’ll find more helpful stories, tips, and lots of dating ideas for creating your romantic marriage. Find out more at http://www.kidsdiscuss.com/parents_in_love.asp
Jean Tracy, MSS, invites you to subscribe to her FREE top-rated Parenting Newsletter, “Tips and Tools for Character Builders” at http://www.KidsDiscuss.com and receive 80 fun activities to share with your kids.
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