Mediation is not just for divorce.
Wouldn’t it be great if we learned mediation techniques in premarital counseling? Wouldn’t it be great if we taught our children how to self mediate?
Conflicts will happen in the best families and the best relationships. The question we should ask ourselves is, “Is this a dysfunctional conflict or a functional conflict?”
A functional conflict is still a conflict. It’s hard to face, but in the end will produce growth, honesty, creativity, and respect in a relationship. Dysfunctional conflict has a nasty way of repeating itself even when all the parties do their best to avoid dealing with each other.
Way back in 1985 my beloved late husband and I were on our way to get our engagement pictures taken and we got in a fight. I really don’t remember what it was about and he’s not here to ask. What I do remember is crying on the way to the photo shoot. It was a classic dysfunctional conflict because we didn’t resolve the issue, we faked our feelings and taught each other to smile and pretend. We didn’t resolve the conflict in a good, creative, respectful way. We slammed the car doors, got out, and smiled in front of the camera like all was well. To this day when I look at that picture I see the tear stained eyes and anger and sadness behind the fake smile.
What if we had taken a moment to really listen to each other? What if we had summarized back each other’s perspective and respected each other’s feelings. What if we had resolved our conflict by collaborating and what if when I looked at that photo I had good memories of how to fight right?
Eventually we figured out how to really talk to each other and more importantly how to listen to each other. However, we learned it the hard way. We were brought up with the message that fighting is bad and avoidance is good. Well, maybe that is one of the reasons the divorce rate is so high? Now I teach the couples that come in for communication coaching that (fair) fighting is good and avoidance is bad.
If you are interested in or feel you could benefit from learning how to fight fair and engage in functional conflict maybe a Mediation Session, or Communication Coaching, or one of our other services is right for you. Our team offers practical toils to engage in effective peaceful ways that lead to resolution and understanding. Visit our website for more information today! http://www.resolutionsolutions.net/our_services/