Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Good Fighting/Bad Fighting

Fighting in marriage is unavoidable, but most married couples who have been at it for awhile realize that there are both bad and good ways to "argue." So for those who are still a little hazy as to what constitutes "good" fighting versus "bad" fighting, here are a few examples to help illustrate.

Good fighting involves listening attentively to the feelings of your spouse. It involves using "I feel" statements to avoid putting your spouse on the defense, and...all that other good psychobabble stuff.

Okay, so now onto "bad" fighting. An inappropriate way to fight would be to immediately start railing your spouse with accusations and insults without listening to what he or she has to say. And if the wife is droning on and on incessantly, it would be bad for the husband to spray her in the face with the shower nozzle in order to get her to shut-up. This can have the effect of elevating the fight to a new level. Now, if you are a wife who is in this situation, you probably shouldn't retaliate by shooting your husband in the crotch with baby oil while he is wearing his nice karate uniform, knowing that he doesn't have time to change because his class starts in five minutes and hoping that he will look like he wet himself.

That would be a bad way to fight.

But if you are a husband who finds himself in this situation, you probably shouldn't exact your revenge by throwing your wife in the tub and spraying all over her nice clothes with the water nozzle, meanwhile battling her for the baby oil which is now being sprayed all over the room. It's also not particularly nice to make sure that the oil gets all over her hair.

And you definitely shouldn't do all of this in front of the kids, who are laughing hysterically that Mommy and Daddy are kicking each other's asses in the bath tub.

Again, this is a bad way to fight. Not to mention it floods your bathroom to the point that, three hours later, there is still a pond on your floor.

But, of course, all of this is just a hypothetical illustration to help you, the reader, avoid these types of displays in your own marriages. I'm glad that I, for one, am in a mature, adult relationship.