Disagreeing Agreeably

My wife and I have been married for over eleven years.  We dated for three years before we were married.  We were just friends for a year before we started dating.  So doing the math I have known my wife for almost half of my life.  Needless to say, we know each other very well.  That’s a great thing.  However, we also know what buttons to push; what irks each other.  Mix that with the fact that we have disagreements like all couples (I repeat) like all couples and what you get is a recipe for disaster if those disagreements are not managed properly.  So how do you manage disagreements without pushing those buttons?

First you have to agree in the beginning to never have an argument while you are angry.  Go somewhere and calm down, then come back when you’re cool enough to discuss the issue without blowing up.  How much time do you need?  That’s difficult to say.  But the bible tells us that we are not to let the sun go down while we are still angry (Ephesians 4:26).  If you’re mad for longer than a day about anything, you may need to work on yourself first before you try to get your point across to your spouse.

Next you have to disagree agreeably. Calmly identify the heart of the issue.  What are your needs? What are your concerns?  Allow your spouse to reply with their needs and concerns as well.  Once everything is on the table start looking for ways to compromise.  I honestly believe that there has to be a compromise, even though I imagine that some arguments will end in concession.  But one spouse cannot be the only party that concedes in all arguments.  That marriage will not last long and if it does, it will not be a happy union.

After a compromise has been struck, make up.  This is the best part of any argument.  Whether it’s a hug and a kiss or its love making, reconciliation is essential even in the most peaceful of disagreements.  You were at odds with your spouse during that moment of variance.  After being at odds with each other, it is great to reunite with your spouse.  What better way to reunite with your spouse than through intimacy?

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3 Responses to Disagreeing Agreeably

  1. Valerie says:

    Great post! Respect is very important in any disagreement. My husband and I have been married for 14 years, and I’ve never been disrespectful to him when we’ve had an argument, and neither has he to me. I LOVE him!! Anything we’re having a problem with is *temporary* but our marriage and relationship is *permanent*, so why would I do or say something that could affect that? Know what I mean? 🙂

    • I know exactly what you mean. And I love that you brought out the temporal and enternal aspects of relationships. We are to build our hopes on things eternal. The moment is a deadly thing to get caught up in.

      Again, thanks for the comment.

  2. Pingback: Daily Leadership Thought #142 – How Well Do You Disagree? « Ed Robinson's Blog

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