Arrows of Appreciation

When there is tension or conflict in a relationship, we are encouraged to speak using “I” statements—“I get worried when I don’t know you’re working late,” or “I wish we could make more of an effort to spend quality time alone.” “I” statements attribute responsibility to the speaker for his/her own perceptions and feelings.

“You” statements, such as, “You never let me know when you’re going to be home late,” or “You spend too much time with your friends,” can put the listener on the defensive from the start. In a way, a “you” statement is like shooting an arrow right at your partner. If it precedes negative, accusatory, or blaming words, they are going to feel the sting and likely react in just as prickly a manner. arrow Read More

Are you a (Personality) Backseat Driver?

backseat-driverDo you like your partner’s personality? That might sound like a ridiculous question to some people. “Of course I do!
Why would I be with him/her if I didn’t?” Please note that this is not the same as “do you love your partner?” You may (or may not) be surprised to learn that many people spend a lot of time trying to change aspects of his/her partner’s personality or secretly hope that one day their “annoying” traits will magically cease. Read More