We first came across the guidelines on our original Weekend. Feel free to use them and to share them with others.
(The term fight, as we use it, never refers to any physical or verbal abuse.)
- Remember that criticism and sarcasm wound people and destroy our capacity to belong to each other. Avoid criticism.
- Avoid name-calling and character assassination.
- Never fight when one or both of you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- It is a waste of time placing blame. Since you can't un-spill the milk, work at moving forward.
- Avoid using absolutes, such as, "you always" or "you never" or "every time." They are not true.
- Finish the fight. Even if there are tears, be sensitive, but do not walk away. Continue the fight for your relationship.
- Do not bring in third parties. A parent, a friend, a person at work has no part in your confrontation. The real problem is often a miscommunication.
- Stay physically close to each other. An affectionate touch helps each to know that there is nothing that cannot be worked out in love.
- The issue under discussion is never as important as the two of you are. Being right is not as important as being in relationship.
- Fight for clarification, not to win. If I "win" a fight then I'm sleeping with a loser