Anyone who has been married for more than five minutes has probably heard the following sage marital wisdom. It could come from a parent, a close friend, or even your crazy Aunt Matilda but the message is clear: When you are fighting with your spouse, no matter what you do, don’t go to bed angry at each other.
It seems easy enough. But then you find yourself in a moment where you don’t understand her, she blows things way out of proportion, or you both have an opinion that is from such opposite ends of the spectrum that you want to be anywhere (another galaxy perhaps) but in the contentious moment you find yourself in.
Husband and wife authors Deb and Ron DeArmond want to give you permission to fight it out. In their new book Don’t Go to Bed Angry, Stay Up and Fight, the DeArmonds contend that conflict isn’t the problem. The real issue is how we deal with it…. [read more]
Sample from the book: Rules? There Are Rules?
“Yes, I know. Every marriage has conflict,” she said. “But do you fight?” The forceful staccato of her words punched the air as she leaned forward in her seat. I wasn’t sure I understood her question, but I noticed every eye in the room was locked on us. My husband looked at me and we grinned at each other. The couples group we were addressing seemed pretty serious, intent on getting some insight.
“Well, occasionally there’s a slammed door or two,” I began. “Volume may go up, and often the dogs will run out of the room. But we always follow the rules.” The pretty redhead with the puzzled look in the front raised her hand. “Rules? Rules for having an argument?” Absolutely. There had better be rules. It’s how we’ve stayed married and happy for forty years.
The old saying “All’s fair in love and war” is baloney. Dangerous stuff. It’s a license to put on the gloves, leave kindness (and good judgment) behind, and take no prisoners. All so that you can make your point, snatch the prize, and come out the winner in the moment. But that’s the problem with the approach: you may win in the moment and end up sacrificing the life of the relationship.
“So what are your rules?” someone asked… [read more]