#Letr2Jack – SETTLING QUARRELS by Leke Alder

1. Dear Jack, both you and Jil have to learn to settle your quarrels internally. #Letr2Jack

2. Resorting to third party adjudication of your matrimonial disputes ought to be a last resort. Really last resort. #Letr2Jack

3. Every relationship ought to have its own conflict resolution system, or simple fights will lead to break up. #Letr2Jack

4. It’s why you have to have a review mechanism for disagreements. There’ll always be points of disagreement. #Letr2Jack

5. Many times the facts in issue in themselves don’t warrant the breakup of a marriage. #Letr2Jack

6. There are very few facts in life which in themselves can lead to divorce. #Letr2Jack

7. What causes divorce many times is the poor management of disagreement. #Letr2Jack

8. When there’s a disagreement for example couples refuse to talk to each other and that’s poor management of disagreement. #Letr2Jack

9. You can’t resolve a quarrel when there’s no communication. #Letr2Jack

10. And so the critical thing in a marital dispute is to keep the backdoor of communication open. #Letr2Jack

11. You cannot foreclose communication when there’s marital dispute, or there’ll be no resolution. #Letr2Jack

12. Once you foreclose communication in a marital quarrel the marriage becomes imperiled. #Letr2Jack

13. And you know why we don’t want to break the ice when there’s disagreement? Pride! #Letr2Jack

14. No party wants to be the one who capitulates. But that “capitulation” is actually a sign of maturity. #Letr2Jack

15. Seek to discuss the issue. If you don’t discuss there can be no resolution, only exacerbation. #Letr2Jack

16. Which means we have to be careful what we say in a quarrel with our spouse, even in the heat of anger. #Letr2Jack

17. And once you start issuing ultimata in a marital quarrel, you give the other party no option but to defend his or her pride. #Letr2Jack

18. So avoid issuing ultimata and decreeing extreme threats in a marital dispute. #Letr2Jack

19. When you ratchet a threat extremity you’re practically saying it’s either my way or no more marriage. #Letr2Jack

20. Now, like I said the problem many times in a marital discord is not the facts. It’s the interpretation of the facts. #Letr2Jack

21. It is our perspective on simple facts that often create marital discord. #Letr2Jack

22. Let me illustrate. A man comes home but refuses to eat. Fact. There are many perspectives to the hunger strike. #Letr2Jack

23. Perspective 1: Oh, some girl has fed him. Perspective 2: He thinks I’m a terrible cook, nothing pleases him. #Letr2Jack

24. Perspective 3: He’s not eating because I said no to sex last night. Perspective 4: He’s not eating because he’s mean. #Letr2Jack

25. Truth is, all those perspectives may be false! The man may just have had a terrible day at work! #Letr2Jack

26. Of course when there’s no communication imagination runs wild and those perspectives become facts. #Letr2Jack

27. That’s how the man in our illustration suddenly begins to have an affair he’s not even aware of! #Letr2Jack

28. You see, when there’s a disagreement the human mind considers only negative scenarios. It’s jaundiced. #Letr2Jack

29. Here’s another thing to note: men and women view issues differently. #Letr2Jack

30. Because the sexes view issues differently there’ll be different interpretations of facts, unique interpretations. #Letr2Jack

31. Means in a quarrel, you’re going to have two sets of facts. Perspectives are facts remember! #Letr2Jack

32. In other words, you and your wife are not really talking about the same thing! You’re talking two different things! #Letr2Jack

33. Now, the routine we employ in the settling of quarrels is winded soliloquy – long serious speeches. #Letr2Jack

34. The man has his extensive say, pouring out HIS perspective, the woman does the same. #Letr2Jack

35. When soliloquys are delivered in a quarrel, truth is there’s NO communication, just pouring out of viewpoints. #Letr2Jack

36. And the soliloquy is usually done in anger by both parties. When there’s interruption that itself becomes a fight. #Letr2Jack

37. So it’s better to identify the facts and thrash them out one by one, each side explaining his or her viewpoint. #Letr2Jack

38. You’ll discover (with some exceptions) it’s the extrapolations, the opinions that are the problem not the facts. #Letr2Jack

39. And sometimes the cause of the quarrel is missing pieces of information – facts not communicated by either side. #Letr2Jack

40. And so judgments are made on incomplete information. When the full facts are shared both sides then look foolish. #Letr2Jack

41. You’ll wonder what the fight was all about when the quarrel is settled. Especially if both parties truly love each other. #Letr2Jack

42. And so the causes of most mischief in a marital quarrel are interpretation of facts, extrapolations and missing bits. #Letr2Jack

43. The character of communication about an issue can also create a problem. #Letr2Jack

44. In a marital quarrel you have to be careful about the words you use. You’ve got to control your anger. #Letr2Jack

45. The spirit of the prophet is subject to the prophet. You have control over your utterances. #Letr2Jack

46. And if you want someone to have a radical change of behavior in marriage, you first acknowledge the efforts made. #Letr2Jack

47. When you acknowledge effort you create encouragement. The other party feels appreciated, for effort. #Letr2Jack

48. Then you can ask for more. But in a positive tone, not a threatening or commanding tone. #Letr2Jack

49. Marriage is about cooperation. Marriage is a cooperative society. #Letr2Jack

50. You tease out cooperation in marriage. You can’t command cooperation. That’s a contradiction in terms. #Letr2Jack

51. Both of you sit down, and in a cooperative spirit go through the issues. Cooperative spirit I said. #Letr2Jack

52. In that spirit you’ll see how wrong you both are – as the other person gives his or her perspective to the set of facts. #Letr2Jack

53. Keep this objective in mind: the end of a marital quarrel should be greater love. #Letr2Jack

54. Disagreements are meant to bring you closer. Why? Because resolution creates greater understanding. #Letr2Jack

55. Marriage takes a lot of adjustment. But we sometimes ask for leaps of faith instead of adjustment. #Letr2Jack

56. We ask for those leaps of faith because we assume our perspective is what’s right. That our viewpoint is the standard. #Letr2Jack

57. After a resolved quarrel forgive. #Letr2Jack

58. Not only forgive, chuck out the whole thing. Don’t file “another thing” away. You’re not Ministry of Information. #Letr2Jack

59. That way, when next there’s a quarrel there’s no referencing of past quarrels. It’s how to have a good marriage. #Letr2Jack

60. Truth is, quarrels are sometimes indicative of the passion we have for a happy marriage. Convert the energy. #Letr2Jack

….that’s it…. #60TweetsIn60Minutes

Series: JacknJil
Title: Letr2Jack
Episode Title: Settling Quarels
By Leke Alder

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