Thursday, July 29, 2010

Outrageous Commitment ... Fussing, Fighting and managing mess in your relationship.


Ok,so this picture has nothing to do with this post, but I just started using Photo Bucket (thanks to my honey buns) and it makes blogging/posting pictures soooo much easier.Plus, you can do fun stuff with your photos too, for FREE!

Back to the post -Last night was the last session of Outrageous Commitment at Bayside ;(, I'm kinda sad about it. Well last night was all about how to fight fair in your marriage/relationship.

So here we go: FYI, from Dr. Ronn an imperfect marriage is the only one available-because you picked an imperfect mate, and so did they. You just need to trust in each other to be willing to do something imperfectly , but with the perfect intention.

Conflict is good it means you have an intimate relationship where there are issues that are important to both of you, but there is just two different ideas on how to solve it.
Problems are bad, that is when conflicts didn't get managed.

Dr. Ronn described 3 common mess management styles-it is up to you to understand which kind of fighter you and your mate are.

Style #1 Dramatic Debaters
This persons number 1 desire is to come out the declared winner-they have lots of words, steel trap memory, very analytical,logical,decisive. They will wear you out with words; they will criticize you, flip the story (so the finger points at you) and accuse.
Not prone to crying, but building their case. They will use manipulation to try and win the argument.
WHY they do this- their great fear is loss of control. They try to just shut it down, and in their favor.
What they NEED to do- we need to speak the truth and love. but we need to also, listen and speak in love. Trying to expose faults or wrongs-even if it is the truth , your hitting the bulls eye but it's hitting your mates heart. Your mate might still cook you breakfast and still take care of the kids, but will become increasingly disconnected from the heart, self and affection (and maybe give it to someone else). You may say what's on your mind once (not rottenly) and then shut up.

Style #2 Silent Stuffers
This person has issues/concerns, but tries to avoid conflict and debate. There is a fear to say it because they don't want to upset their mate . They instead would rather have their mate figure it out-If you love me then you should know, I should not have to say it. They won't share what hurt them, angered them or what they want.Their fear is their mate might get mad, they might get lonely or they will be told how emotional or ridiculous they are.
WHY they do this- Their fear of feeling inadequate.
What they NEED to do-They need to open up their mouths and speak. If we speak truth and love to each other than we grow up-become emotionally mature. They want peace, but it's almost at any expense, we can't grow where we are if we don't talk about where we are. Then you might sacrifice the peace your looking for-if you stuff and stuff and stuff you will become enraged. Their need is to speak bold,it might not feel good but it does good-people might not want to hear it but they need to.

Style #3 Cautious Campaigner
This person uses words, but they are vague, non specific, tip toe around the issue. They feel if they get to the meat of the issue, they won't get your approval.They feel if they never get specific, then they won't say something you don't like. They also, don't want to lose your visual/verbal affection.Like a campaigner they try and avoid controversial topics-they get their self esteem/approval from the relationship.
WHY they do this-Fear of loss of approval.
What they NEED to do-For the sake of the relationship they have to say things your mate might not approve of.

So, once you determine what style you are (and what you can do to improve your conflict style)here are some starting places to get that improvement moving (it's progression not all at once).

DO attack the problem and not the person.When you attack the issues you are doing it as partners (working together) when you attack each other you are opponents.

Explain your feelings, but don't express it all over the place. Just because you feel something you don't HAVE to let it out-there is no license to act out your anger or all of your emotions. Not everything on your mind needs to be expressed (Dr. Ronn used the example of a couple in therapy, where the husband told his wife he was disgusted and repulsed by her-did he feel it , yes-was it true, yes-did he need to share it-NO!

Move to a resolution. Even if you have to stop an argument half way through if it's going no where.

Inform your mate without trying to transform them.

and lastly(which I don't think a lot of people do-b/c honestly, I never thought of it),
Set policy and procedure for fighting.Should talk about what's off limits (like cussing). Dr. Ronn gave examples from him and his wife. His wife said that if she has been crying through the argument that he should come over to hold her, even if she tries to pull away. He wanted her to recognize that whenever he stops talking (and just grunts) that means his feelings are hurt and she needs to stop and tell him how much he means to her.

Alrighty, so next class-parenting...he he just kidding not jumping to that yet.


  1. Thanks Stephanie, I have always seen myself as the Silent Stuffer, but I really am trying to change that.. HUMMM parenting are you trying to tell me something??? lol

  2. During this session as Dr. Ronn was going through the styles I saw myself as a hybrid of Silent Stuffer and Cautious Campaigner, not saying much and when I did I was constantly worried about the other persons approval and needing the relationship (you saw the good, bad and the ugly of this mom)lol. But it's funny because looking at it now, I can totally see that I am in a mature, grown up relationship - I am no longer worried about being condemmed or needing approval because I know Greg will listen and not attack me. It feels great to be confident in that we are both mature adults who can listen and share feelings, we just need to get to the point where we share are feelings (were both still working on that)! xoxo