Thursday, October 11

Fight Fair

Figuring out how to have a disagreement in marriage is crucial to move your relationship from surviving to thriving.  I sat and contemplated the ways I have learned (so far) to have an argument and go to bed happy.
  • Pray.  Maybe it's cliche, but so what.  Seriously pray for the issue at hand, pray for your husband, pray for the words you should or shouldn't say.
  • Save the tongue-lashing for the shower.  When I just know that perfect, whip-it good, razor sharp comment that would really be "perfect" to say, I'll rehearse in the shower (or in a place no one will hear.)  You'll find that these words sounded waaay better in your head and basically don't accomplish anything other than a brief self-exultation and a bit of guilt on the side.
  • Don't play mind games.  This goes for yourself and for your husband.  In my mind, I can build something up way bigger than it ever was in real life.  I can dwell on a grain of rice until it becomes a loaf of bread.  Don't play mind games with your husband either- meaning... "Well, I will say it's fine, but I really want him to notice how upset I am with my tone and ask me what's wrong."  Communicate verbally, not telepathically.  Usually the 6th sense is missing from most people.
  • Discern what is a true marital issue and what is spiritual warfare.  Yes, the reoccurring issue of me dumping alllll my things on our table and leaving it there for days needs to be addressed and worked on.  But there may be things in your marriage that are only issues because of the footholds Satan has in your life that are expressing themselves in your arguments.  Are you bitter, having a chip on your shoulder and taking it out on your spouse?  Is there some sin that is causing arguments that needs to be dealt with personally?  After June was born, I was convinced that I was overwhelming Kenny with my emotions.  And that if I asked him for help, I would again, be overwhelming and annoying.  Kenny had to sit down with me, pray over me, and reassure me of his love, support, and desire to help.  I had let Satan get a foothold of self-pity in my mind and it was hard to let go.
  • Don't assume expectations of yourself or of your spouse.  If it hasn't been said, don't assume it.  Don't assume your husband expects a clean house everyday and then start an argument about how you can't get it all done!  (Yes, I have done this!)  Expectations are great, just communicate what each person needs and wants and stick to it.
  • Touch.  Even just a hand-hold. When it's all said and done, this reconnects you and makes you think, "Yeah, he loves me."  At least it does for me. :)
There are other great tid-bits out there, like don't bring up the past, use "I feel" statements, consider the other person's point of view, etc.  This article I found on Realsimple.com was surprisingly insightful and funny, called "10 Ways to Make Your Marriage Divorceproof."

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