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How to Fight Fairly

The way a married couple fights can often tell psychologists more than what they fight about. If done correctly, conflict can strengthen a marriage.

Difficulty Level: Average      Time Required: 15 minutes

Here's How:
  1. Don't let little things that bother you build up until you explode.
  2. If you are angry about something and don't try to talk about it with your spouse within 48 hours, let it go.
  3. If your spouse doesn't want to discuss the matter, set an appointment within the next 24 hours.
  4. Know what the issue is. Then stick to the subject.
  5. Keep it between the two of you. Don't bring in third parties like your mother-in-law or his best friend.
  6. Don't hit below the belt.
  7. Don't bring up past history.
  8. No name calling. Even endearing terms and names can be hurtful by using a sarcastic tone.
  9. Be careful how you use humor. Laughter is good, but teasing can be misinterpreted.
  10. Listen to one another fully. This includes watching body language. Look at one another while you speak.
  11. Don't interrupt.
  12. Don't blame one another or accuse.
  13. Try to use "I" sentences instead of "you" sentences.
  14. Hold hands while talking.
  15. Be open to asking for forgiveness and being willing to forgive.
  1. Even though it may be hard to forgive your spouse, not forgiving can cause more harm both emotionally and physically to yourself and to your marriage.
  2. Remember to not fight to win, but to fight for your relationship.
  3. Conflict is not the problem. All married couples have disagreements. It's not knowing how to effectively argue that creates difficulty in a marriage.

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