#17 IN MY SERIES OF POSTINGS DEDICATED TO SUMMARIZING A WONDERFUL BOOK ENTITLED “THE DUDE’S GUIDE TO MARRIAGE: TEN SKILLS EVERY HUSBAND MUST DEVELOP TO LOVE HIS WIFE WELL” BY DARRIN & AMIE PATRICK.
Continued from Amie Patrick
Avoid Arguing When You Are Depleted
It’s almost always dangerous to enter into conflict when you’re depleted on a physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual level. Sometimes it’s unavoidable, but when at all possible, it’s better to take a break, get a little rest, or do something replenishing instead of making immediate resolution the goal. We’ve found the HALT acronym to be extremely helpful. If you’re hungry, angry, lonely, or tired, it’s better not to dive into a contentious discussion. When any of these factors are present, we tend to say things we don’t really mean and lose sight of the bigger goal, which is working as a team toward common goals and the good of each other.
We’ve had to humbly admit that many skills related to healthy conflict resolution didn’t come naturally to us and that we needed help from wise and trustworthy people in order to learn and grow. We’ve had to step out of our comfort zones and dive into the messiness of working things our slowly and painfully over time. We’ve had to apologize, start over, take a break, apologize again, and keep trying.
Let Go Of The Need For An Immediate Solution
The best thing that Darrin has done for me as a husband is to own the idea that there’s a bigger purpose to conflict than just solving the problem at hand or getting his way. Conflict exposes our hearts and helps us know each other as few other things can. As Darrin has understood and owned the vision of conflict as a means to help us develop a more intimate marriage and a more surrendered personal relationship to God, my love for and trust in him have grown exponentially. It’s easier for me to bring a potentially difficult topic to Darrin when I see him letting go of his desire to solve every problem right now and instead embrace the process of allowing conflict to expose difficulties that we can work through together.
Rules For Fighting Fair
In my next posting I will present Darrin’s writing about how a husband and wife will benefit by having fair fighting rules established before the conflict arises. Fighting fair involves having agreed-upon rules to which each person submits. These are boundaries taht allow both spouses to feel safe enough to enter into conflict, even when emotions run high.
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