My husband recently pointed out to me that I have spent years trying to be a better parent. I've read scores of books, hung out online in places like these... Devoted lots of energy to it.
And, um, a lot less energy to getting along well with him. We've been together for long enough that I thought we had it all worked out. And ok, we get on each other's nerves a lot, but it didn't seem bad to me. He thinks we should both be thinking harder about it. So, I figure if I can put so much effort into parenting I could put some more effort into being a better partner.
Can anyone recommend some resources? Books? Websites? I'm especially interested in communicating better and not being defensive - we both appear threatening to the other one on a regular basis, and the offending party is usually clueless, like 'what did I say?' but very quickly leaping to defend what s/he said to the hurt party. It usually escalates. It's not terrible, but it's not great.
Thank you for any suggestions you may have.
One thing you could do is learn about "non violent communication." There are a couple of good books on the subject, and I suspect that if you hunt around, you can could find some free stuff on the internet.
It's a method of listening to what someone is saying, and trying to understand the feelings behind the words, and then telling them back the feelings. It helps people really feel heard.
Also, figure out a way to spend time together doing something you both enjoy. Having fun together is really good for your marriage.
but everything has pros and cons
If you have never read it I really recommend both of you reading The five love languages by Gary Chapman.
A few of my friends say that The seven levels of intimacy by Matthew Kelly is a great book for strengthening marriages.
oAlisha- eternal companion to mike:, mother to three energetic boys (02):, (05), and (07) and one sweet little girl 3/13. Two in heaven.7/21/2010, 11/05/2011 .
Hold Me Tight bu Sue Johnson. Best marriage book ever. It's not about learning how to communicate, though that helps. It is about developing a secure attachment bond in your marriage. Totally works wonders.