Tip for Couples: How to fight constructively

couples fightThere's fighting and then there's fighting. When couples start yelling and throwing things, when they dredge up every single complaint they've ever had (or "kitchen-sinking," as marital experts typically call it), you can be sure that they won't be celebrating their silver anniversary together. Studies show that the way couples handle conflict is the most important factor in determining whether or not they stay together, according to experts in relationship study.

Happy couples have learned the art of constructive arguing, whose research has demonstrated that it's possible to predict whether or not a couple will divorce after watching them argue for 10 or 15 minutes. In strong marriages, the partners take control of their disagreements by establishing ground rules. They may, for example, call a mutually agreed-upon time-out if the conflict is escalating and unproductive, agreeing to continue the discussion after a cooling-off period.

They also truly listen to each other and won't prematurely try to solve the problem before they've heard each other out. Above all, no matter how angry they get, they don't resort to name-calling and insults - key danger signs.

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