The number one predictor of divorce is the habitual avoidance of conflict.

What’s sad is the reason couples avoid conflict is because they believe it (conflict) causes divorce. It’s like the cartoon where the couple explains to the marriage counselor, We never talk anymore. We figured out that’s when we do all our fighting.”

In the beginning, we avoid conflict because we are in love and we believe that “staying in love” is about agreeing, about NOT fighting. We’re afraid that if we disagree – or fight – we’ll run our marriage off into the ditch. We believe that if we’ve found our soulmate, we’ll agree about most things – and certainly about the important things.

Later, we avoid conflict because when we finally do try to deal with our differences (talk about them) things get so out of hand and our fights so destructive and upsetting, that we simply shut down. After a few bad blow-ups we become determined to avoid conflict at any cost. And, we start wondering if we married the wrong person. We think to ourselves:it shouldn’t be this hard.

Successful couples are those…


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