Tuesday, February 10, 2009

TO FIGHT OR NOT TO FIGHT

FOCUS ON THE FAMILY

 

From TODAY, Voices

Friday, 06-February-2009

 

By Dr James Dobson

 

When a married couple disagrees about something, should they have a showdown or should they just say, “ah, well, let it go”?

 

I heard about one couple celebrating their silver wedding anniversary. The family and friends had gathered for cake and punch, and somebody said: “Tell us how you two have gotten along so well all this time.”

 

The husband said, with a straight face: “Well, when we got married way back there, we promised each other we’d never have a fight. No matter what came up, we’d just talk. And if one or the other began to get hot, then they’d just go take a walk around the block to cool off. Well, it’s worked. And all our married life, we’ve never had a fight. But I’ve had pneumonia 47 times.”

 

I can’t vouch for the total accuracy of that story, and in fact, I’m not even sure I agree with the goal of never fighting.

 

There is a place for confrontation in marriage. But the key is to learn how to fight properly. It’s always destructive to attack the self-esteem of a partner; hurling insults and harsh words when angry.

 

But there is a place for conflict that focuses exclusively on the issue that separates a husband and wife. This approach is highly recommended in long-term marriages, and it even beats a brisk walk around the park. 

 

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