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Licensed Psychologist

6 Tips on Managing Conflict in Marriage

Conflict is normal and inevitable. Here are some tips that will help:

Tip #1 - Learn to talk about issues without blame or criticism.

  • You can learn to ask for what you need without making the other person "bad." It's your need, not their shortcoming.
  • "Keep your claws in."

Tip #2 - Always fight or argue face-to-face.

  • Never try to resolve conflict on texts or emails.
  • All of us automatically add tone and attitude to the written word, whether it is real or imagined (that means YOU too).

Tip #3  - Cool down for 30 minutes if it's getting overheated.

  • Agree to meet one another back in 30 minutes on the couch to talk it through without distractions.
  • Cool down by letting it go, not by building a case.

Tip #4 - Slow down and take turns talking.

  • Do not interrupt each other.
  • Listen to your partner to understand. Don't listen to form your response.
  • When they finish, tell them what makes sense to you about what they said. When they feel understood, ask if they can hear a response.
  • This kind of dialogue will actually turn conflict to closeness!

Tip #5 - Take care of the conflict as soon as possible.

  • Don't sweep things under the rug.
  • You WILL trip over that rug later.

Tip #6 - Consider getting help from an impartial 3rd party.