Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Rules Of Engagement For Fighting In A Marriage

All couples fight.  You can't avoid it.  But you can choose how you fight.

I was at the esteemed Athol Kay's blog, Married Man Sex Life, this morning reading about yelling in a marriage (spoiler alert: don't do it) and I ended up trotting out my marriage's Rules Of Engagement in the discussion.  I thought they might be of benefit to some folks here,. as they have served me well for nearly 20 years. Indeed, as I recently said over at Alpha Game, I feel that us Old Married Guys (OMG) have a duty to pass on successful marital strategies to the younger folk, before they invest in a lot of rented tuxes and divorce lawyers.

Mrs. Ironwood and I  came up with these before we ever got married (we lived together for 6 years first.  I was pretty sure I wanted to marry her 4 years into the relationship, but when you're planning on only marrying one girl . . . better to wait two more years and be sure.) .  We had the help of a highly skilled marriage counselor, one of the very, very few I've known worth the money.   These Rules were mutually understood and agreed-upon before we got married.

They are:

1) No yelling. Reasonable tones only.

2) No name calling. That's disrespectful.

3) Stick to one topic at a time. Don't fight about that thing you did last week.

4) No ultimatums. That's contrary to the spirit of the discussion.

5) No chase-and-follow. We handle our business face to face in our own home without involving other people.

6) No involving other people. This is between us.

7) No ad hominem attacks. That's rude and intellectually dishonest.

8) No kidney punches, i.e. hitting the other person's acknowledged weak spots. After nearly 20 years, we know where those are. If your husband/wife had an alcoholic parent, for example, comparing them to that parent would be considered a kidney punch.

9) No involving the children. This is a debate between adults.

10) No profane language. If you can help it.

That's the general guideline. Our friends think we never fight, but we do -- we just agreed to the rules ahead of time. And NO YELLING is the very first one. Yelling is a clear attempt to establish dominance without having won an argument. That's disrespectful not just to your partner, but to the marriage as a whole. Worse, when a man yells in an argument it demonstrates he has lost his cool.  (Yelling at your children to get their attention, or increasing your tone to denote emotional emphasis of a particular point, is different than Yelling in a fight with your wife).

We've managed to stick to this set of rules for almost two decades, and it has helped us get through some dark times, even when the Rules worked against us, personally.  And that's not to say that both of us haven't occasionally violated one of the less-important of the above rules at various points, including Yelling. When that happens, it's time to call a "time out" and walk away for some silent contemplation, marshal your resources, etc.. It stretches out the fight, but it's better than a trip to the emergency room.

Oh, and the unofficial #11?

Make-up sex. Righteous.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. Hey there,

      How is your marriage going? Be honest…how is it ACTUALLY going?

      If you’re reading this e-mail right now, then chances are your marriage isn’t what it used to be… and maybe it’s so bad, that you feel like your world is falling apart.

      You feel like all the passion, the love, and romance have completely faded.

      You feel like you and your wife can’t stop yelling at each other.

      And maybe you feel that there’s almost nothing you can do to save your marriage, no matter how hard you try.

      But you’re wrong.

      You CAN save your marriage — even if your wife says she wants to get a divorce. You CAN rebuild that passion you felt for one another when you first kissed. And you can bring back that love and devotion you felt for one another when both of you said, “I love you” for the first time.

      If you feel like your marriage is worth fighting for, then do yourself a favour and watch this quick video that will teach you everything you need to know about salvaging the most important thing in the world:

      =>Save Your Marriage Now (VIDEO)<=

      In this video, you’ll learn the three critical mistakes that most couples commit that rip marriages apart. Most couples will never learn how to fix these three simple mistakes.

      You’ll also learn a simple, proven “Marriage Saving” method that makes marriage counsellors look like kindergarten teachers.

      So if you feel like your marriage is about to take its last few breaths, then I urge you to watch this quick video:

      Make Your Wife Adore You Again ==> Fix Your Marriage – Start Making HAPPY Memories<=

      You’ve got nothing to lose.

      All the best,


      PS. Just take 3 mins to watch the video.. if you don’t, you may miss the one tip that could save your marriage. Click here: =>Transform Your Marriage in Minutes<=


  2. We have some selective Indian call young ladies in Dubai who can be your ideal partner in your spare time and can engage you in Indian Escorts in Dubaieach and every way you can consider. Our young ladies originate from good instructed families in India and in this way they are advanced and very much carried on.

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  3. Italian Mixed Asian Samantha is CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI to meet Generous Gentlemen who want and deserve Simply The Best.Grew up in the Heart of Italy... Rome... Well Traveled, with Charming Exotic look, Gorgeous Curvy Body, Combined with Great Personality that makes her irresistible. .

    call and whatsapp number 00971522909500

  4. Let me undress slowly for you and offer my breasts which you can kiss and suck while I stroke you until you are ready for some fun with my CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI and achieve a climax you never thought possible. I know you want me, so don’t wait another minute; call and book me and take me now.

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  5. Look at me and shake at the thought of seeing these incredible breasts. I am only young, so they are still firm and supple; think about what it will be like to have them in your hands and mouth. I am very pretty too, with perfect skin and beautiful eyes. I can be all yours to do with whatever you want, and I’m ready and waiting CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI .

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  6. Kinky Blonde European MILF, with curvaceous , fit and tall body and delicious breasts. GFE Full service (No A-level) OWO Strapon Toys Uniforms Roleplay (pre-scripted scenarios await you) Sensual massage CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  7. Hi I'm Andris! hot 21 year old babe. If you are Looking for some nasty fun The best is here. I have sexy curves and a beautiful face. I will be your fantasy, and I look 100% better than my pics and I guarantee you wont be disappointed and you will call back for more. checkout on CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  8. I have a bright personality I am very friendly and I love to have nice experience and unforgettable moments.
    INCALLS and OUTCALLS as well offer class and good service, CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  9. hi gentlman my name is Mahnoor Baloch I am 21 years of age. I am school going girl..I am exceptionally appealing, beguiling, delightful and hot young CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI.

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  10. Hello am Clara I am young sweet,warm, beautiful and friendly independent CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI, who is waiting to delight you. I am very sexy with a gorgeous natural body.

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  11. KATE is my name, 22 years old. If your looking for a quality companion, Am your special diva who truly enjoy what i do, please fill free to check me on CALL GIRLS IN DUBAI.

    call and whatsapp number +971561616995

  12. Actually I read it yesterday but I had some thoughts about it and today I wanted to read it again because it is very well written. حبوب كبتاجون