November 10, 2010

Green Books Campaign: Taming Marital Arguments

This review is part of the Green Books campaign.Today 200 bloggers take a stand to support books printed in an eco-friendly manner by simultaneously publishing reviews of 200 books printed on recycled or FSC-certified paper. By turning a spotlight on books printed using eco- friendly paper, we hope to raise the awareness of book buyers and encourage everyone to take the environment into consideration when purchasing books.

The campaign is organized for the second time by Eco-Libris, a green company working to make reading more sustainable. We invite you to join the discussion on "green" books and support books printed in an eco-friendly manner! A full list of participating blogs and links to their reviews is available on Eco-Libris website.
I choose this book to review from a list of books because not only was it printed on environmental paper, it sounded intriguing to me. If you're married like I am, arguments are just a part of life. Finding a solution to have better and more productive arguments sounded like a good read to me. And it was.

Taming Marital Arguments: Breaking out of the T.R.A.P by Robert P. Rugel walks through a typical 3-step argument sequence that happens so often in marriage, what he refers to as a trap. First, one spouse triggers (very often accidentally) the argument, this trigger inadvertenly threatens (hurts their self-esteem, makes them feel not wanted) the other spouse, so the threatened spouse automatically goes on the defensive and reacts in a way to protect themselves by likewise threatening or blaming their spouse. And the circle continues until no one even knows why the argument started and both spouses are hurt and frustrated.

Rugel walks through numerous real-life examples in his book, and I'm sure at least one example would resonate with all of us. The nice thing about the book is that after Rugel explains how the majority of married couples go through this, he also explains how to solve the problem, or at least better it - talk through what the major argument triggers are. Are they money related? Sex? Housework? Learning to identify the major triggers helps you to avoid them in the first place, which also helps to avoid falling into the trap sequence.

Overall I thought this book was very helpful and eye-opening. Sometimes you need to have someone else tell you're missing right in front of your very face. And I know that since reading this book I have been much better about looking for the things that may trigger an argument and nipping it at the bud. I would recommend this book to anyone in any relationship but especially anyone that is married. 5 stars.


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