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Secrets Of Effective Communication (III).

By Debra Cohen, LCSW.


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Marcia had to work on keeping her resolve and thinking about how her sympathy for Jason could let her be taken advantage of by him. Joe realized that he needed to have more sympathy and that Jason noticed. By working together and communicating with each other they were able to consider each other's point of view and not push each other into extreme positions. (An example of an extreme position is when the father punishes the son, but the mother slips him a $10 bill).

Something that really helps in this type situation is to stay open, not 'dig in your heels,' realize that your spouse feels that this is the best solution, and above all, keep your sense of humor.

Breaking old patterns:

Whether it's overeating or drinking, another area in which tensions occur in relationships is where one person wants the other to 'discipline themselves' 'Why do you have to drink on weekends?' or 'Why do you have to have a second desert?' One person (man or woman) becomes the judge or conscience and the other is perceived as weak, over-indulgent, or lazy. Sometimes people get extreme in these interactions.

A lot of cartoons and comics picture couples this way. The stereotypical picture is one of the man reading the newspaper at breakfast while his wife tries to speak with him. She talks even more to get his attention, and sometimes becomes emotional in order to try to reach him. Because she is more emotional, he buries his head even further in the paper, leading to a negative interaction.




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