Question and Answer:
My partner and I are both so defensive that we can’t communicate about anything anymore. Help!
Learn some basic communication tools and stick with them- such as using “I” statements, and making a pact to not blame or cut each other down. Then, understand what is happening is that each of you do not feel understood by the other, and the goal is to listen and acknowledge what the other is saying.
When communicating about heated topics, searching for and acknowledging areas of agreement can be very powerful in helping both parties feel understood and to reduce the chances of stalemate. For example, if you are disagreeing over discipline for your teen, acknowledging that you both love the child and are trying to do what is best can greatly reduce the defensiveness and eventually lead to solutions you both feel comfortable with.
So often in our arguments with our significant other, we don’t necessarily want to “win”, we want to feel understood, and when we feel understood, we are much more willing to look for areas of compromise. This works with kids too!
Excerpt from Mindful Living Blog: Healing Stories
Telling stories can be a fun activity, but it is also good for you! When we share stories of how we grew up, our parents or extended families, we build upon the connections and it helps shape our identity. Telling stories helps us see that we are part of something much larger than ourselves.
Marriage: It’s not if you fight, but how you fight, that can help or hurt.
However, if fighting is inevitable, why do so many marriages last—and, indeed, thrive—for a lifetime? The answer isn’t whether or not you fight, but how you go about it. The couples who have learned how to fight fairly, and also when to just walk away have stronger/healthier marriages!
Time Magazine, Sept. 29, 2010
From the director:
The leaves are turning colors and it gets chilly at night. I love the cooler air! We are walking more at night as a family and that’s been a very nice experience and good time to talk. At the clinic, our two new therapists (Deb Graf and Layne Sampson) are up and running and doing great. Tricia Schutz has expanded her hours due to high demand and it’s been nice having her around more. The play therapy room has been a hit so far with kids, and we are so happy to be able to offer that service to the community. Thank you, to our clients and others who refer to us- we appreciate it and will continue to practice with integrity and skill.