Eye-Rolling Is a Predictor of Divorce + 12 Other Things to Know About Marriage

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Ada Calhoun on Jun 8, 2010 at 9:19PM

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How to Fight Fair

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a Ada Calhoun on Jun 8, 2010 at 9:52PM

You talk about bad and good ways to fight, and say eye-rolling is a strong predictor of divorce. What else do we need to look out for, and what does the way we fight teach our kids?

Even disagreements can be positive. You just want to watch the general tone of your discussions. Are they accusatory? Are they laced with criticism or contempt? Are there gestures like crossed arms and eye-rolling? These are red flags. The goal of conflict in a marriage is not to defeat the other person; it's to find a middle ground. When the fight is getting hot or out of control, you need to know how to de-escalate it before damage is done. Specifically: Speak in a slow, quiet voice. Look your partner in the eyes. Keep legs and arms uncrossed. If needed, take a time-out to collect your thoughts. Children model what they see their parents doing. If you want your child to have a good relationship with his father, he needs to see you having a good relationship with his father, too.

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