• Call Now: 405.341.3554
  • Connect

Edmond Family Counseling Articles

Articles by the Counselors at Edmond Family Counseling

He Said, She Said

Thursday, May 30, 2013
By Belinda Crosier, M.E., LPC

To expand on the previous article regarding the marital relationship, lets look further at the role of communication in satisfactory relationships. When embarking upon discussion of those topics fraught with potential for conflict or misunderstanding, we might do well to ask ourselves: Is my goal to join with others, or to create separation in order to prove myself right and which will be achieved by my communication style? Another way to consider this is to determine if we are more invested in truly understanding how our partner feels, or in defending our own egos, thereby showing our partner he or she is wrong. In the latter mode, discussions can easily get derailed into attacking and counter-attacking, the original purpose of the communication is lost, feelings may be greatly hurt or the relationship irreparably damaged, and still no resolution has occurred.

The need to protect or defend is an inherent motivation to shield ourselves from any threat of emotional pain, which can be the feeling of being judged, criticized or put down.

The need to defend invites many of us to feel angry, as anger is much easier to tolerate and express than fear. Partners may act out the need to protect in several ways. One way is to adopt superficial compliance, denying his or her own feelings or needs out of fear of conflict or further judgment. A partner may become invested in contro, and attempt to win by trying to change the other partners mind or behavior through the use of guilt or fear. Indifference is a passive-aggressive response demonstrated by ignoring the conflict or becoming preoccupied with other endeavors in which the partner is in effect saying, I'm afraid to say how I really feel, but I refuse to allow you to hurt or control me. These protective behaviors can become self-perpetuating patterns that have the potential of escalating to dangerous levels or shutting one partner down totally, neither of which allows for understanding and sharing, the prerequisite for true intimacy in a relationship.

The intent to learn or understand involves a willingness to be vulnerable and open; to connect with and express our feelings directly rather than through the filter of perceived threats to our ego or emotional security. This is behavior that emanates from our higher self, those positive feelings of love, acceptance, confidence and wonder. It requires stepping out of the cloak of fear that we may instinctively adopt at the first hint of conflict. Understanding that we have the right to express our needs and wants can help us do so in a gentle, loving manner, which, with time, will invite our partner to respond in a like fashion. Genuinely, sincerely trying to understand our partner can be accomplished by using reflective listening techniques rephrasing what our partner has said, rather than refuting it. This conveys the intent to understand. The authors of the book Fighting for Your Marriage suggest that partners take turns having the floor expressing feelings while the other reflects until he/she achieves an understanding of what the speaker is actually saying. Partners can take turns actually holding an item than represents the floor. Eliminating the phrases You always or You never can help lower defensiveness in partners discussing touchy subjects. Simply beginning sentences with the phrase I feel or I would like can avoid the partners radar-scanning for the perceived attack that inevitably follows the word you.

Effective, loving communication is a process that improves with time and practice. Starting now means you can accomplish it sooner rather than later!

Belinda Crosier, Masters of Education and Licensed Professional Counselor at Edmond Family Counseling. She can be reached at 351-3554.

Comments
Post has no comments.
Post a Comment



Captcha Image

Trackback Link
http://edmondfamilycounseling.org/BlogRetrieve.aspx?BlogID=17125&PostID=1105196&A=Trackback
Trackbacks
Post has no trackbacks.

Recent Posts


Tags

Panic attacks Feldman and Kravetz Newsletter Darcy McConnell Scapegoating DIY Marriage counseling How prevalent is domestic violence Communication Gender Roles Edmond Character Council HK pen Help for panic and anxiety Summer Plans for Teens Childhood depression Unemployment and depression Role Models United States Drug Enforcement Agency Millenials Character Development Social anxiety Independent Living bucket list Prescription Drugs Marijuana Butane Hask Oil Teens Use of Technology Facebook Family Roles Positive Illusions Oklahoma Department of Human Services Normalcy Teenagers Teens and Smartphones Personality Test Underage Drinking Negative Thinking Twitter Sanjay Gupta Confidentiality Setting Boundaries for Your Teen Peers Marriage counseling self-sabotage The Martian Movie Drinking in high school AARP Emotional Development Anxiety Snapchat Changing Problem Behavior personal growth How to control panic attacks Siblings in Conflict Parkland Shooter Alcohol Organization Bias Summer time parenting Learning How do children process trauma Suicide Prevention Recommendations high school Spanking Parenting Teenagers Setting Boundaries with Adult Children Relationships MEDITERRANEAN DIET Mayme White Miller Boundaries Jay Asher Americans with Disabilities Act Legalization of Marijuana David Feldman Panic Young Adults Adult Children Teen Safety Great Depression Learning Disabilites Addiction Michael Jackson Suicide Prevention for Teens The Martian Book 13 Reasons Why Tetra-Amelia Syndrome Divorce School Divorce Captain of Your Ship Teens and cell phones Speaker Listener Technique Bias and memory Why did the system fail Freshman Year Parenting through Divorce Conflict privilege Misconceptions of Smoking Marijuana The Miracle Worker HB 2249 Micro-aggression Seniors Teen Suicide Child Abuse Grandparents as parents National Drug Threat Assessment Summary When Teens Should Get a Cell Phone Self Investment Suicide Nutrition and stress 5 Love Languages Exercise treatment for depression Belinda Crosier Drugs Al McCormick Depression How common are panic attacks Ridley Scott responsibility Tumblr Working Parents Heroin in the Suburbs Cell Phones Self Image Family Systems Theory Children Gun violence and mental health Helen Keller Self-Esteem Bullying Prom Chad McCoy Parenting and Cell Phones ADA GirlStrong What Matters Most Program Risk taking Teens and Time Management Grounded Hope Edmond Family Counseling Community Suicide Prevention Programs Wax The Golden Years Happiness Teenage Boys Strong Willed Child School Anxiety Back to School Entitlement Syndrome goals Chores for Teens Funding Medical Use of Marijuana in Oklahoma Bong Trauma Fear Detox Diet Quinton Ellis Is therapy forever 13 Reasons Why NOT Teen Drug Use Prom safety Opiods Communicating with your child Culture Audrey Woods How to recognize domestic violence Domestic violence resources Will counseling work quickly Disciplining Teens What is domestic violence list Aggregated News for Teens Sheila Stinnett Dating brain What to do when you are laid off non-verbal communication School Edmond drug use New year’s resolution Technology Annie Sullivan Edmond Call of Duty Edmond Municipal Court Microagression Elizabeth Loftus Reading How long should counseling take Parenting Family Theory Teen Parenting What Really Matters Joshua and Rebecca Weigel Political bias Procrastination Twenty Somethings Parent peer pressure Discipline Mild-Depression Eating Disorder Social Media gadgets Therapy Decision-Making Grandparent Initiative 710 Instagram Early Treatment of Depression How many sessions do I need World Health Organization Links between unemployment and depression College Age Children Supersurvivors Girl Strong Grandparenting Food Allergies Drug Use Teenage perception of drug use fads Marriage Impact of Suicide Retirement Planning Panic Disorder Disasters Support Group Codependency THE PALEO DIET How to detect signs of depression Child Development College Oklahoma drug use Communication techniques for couples Movies for Teens Amanda Percival Substance Abuse Apps for Teens Jackie Shaw Holiday stress Communicating with your teen Affluenza Managing substance abuse Golden Child Co-Parenting Class The Butterfly Circus Dr. Ben Carson Retirement History How to talk to your kids about terrorism Holidays The Amazing Race Oklahoma Statute on Marijuana College Transitions Positive Reinforcement Hanna Baker Choices Prevention Drug Abuse spring How to manage anxiety Prom guidelines for teens Summer Limitations of counseling Depression and social media Fidget Spinners Sexual Abuse Presidential debate Butane Honey Oil Time Management Ben Carson Death Enabling Adult Children Schedule 1 Drug parenting college age kids Teenage Development College Campus Terrorism and children Mental Health Divorce with minor children Anger Parenting with purpose Teen Jobs Goal Setting Disability diet THE KETOGENIC DIET Unemployment Brain Research Heroin Crisis Consequences ADHD John Goetz James Dobson Developmentally appropriate strategies for grief counseling Waxing Emotions Dr. Rhonda Patrick Lee Daniel Kravetz Co-Parenting Donald Miller Isolation in teens Political Correctness Stress Andy Weir Positive Thinking

Archive

Call Us Now!