Cobalt and I are having our second premarital counseling session this coming weekend. At the end of the first one, we had to take a test about ourselves and our relationship (how we deal with money, planning for the future, etc). Now this time we are going to discuss the areas that the test said where we are compatible and incompatible and then come up with plans on how to handle things when the incompatible areas pop up. I am kind of intrigued, excited, and nervous about this upcoming session. Where are our weakest points? Where are our strongest points? How will we learn to bring up sensitive topics? I hope this is helpful for making our relationship even stronger. :D
So… the picture… well in our first session, our counselor mentioned a couple he knew that had a stuffed cow prominently displayed in the house. Whenever one of them was upset and needed to talk to the other, they would turn the cow over – on its side if things were bad but not terrible and on its back if things needed to be discussed immediately. In this way, the second person could see the cow and know that their spouse is upset. This spares the first person the awkwardness of having to admit that he/she is upset and allows the second person to jump right in and ask the question “What’s wrong?” It’s kind of an awesome system if you ask me. Think about when you are upset and how hard it is for you to admit that something is wrong and how much you are just hoping your spouse/partner/boyfriend/girlfriend/whatever will just pick up on it and ask you about it. No longer! Just turn over the cow. Think about when you feel weird but you don’t know why or what it means or how to bring it up… turn over the cow. Problem solved. Now your spouse/partner/boyfriend/girlfriend/whatever can just ask you. They understand how you feel (based on the cow’s position) and now they can start the conversation.
I think it is neat. Cobalt and I were inspired and actually have this cow in our house though to date we have not actually used it… But we could…
What about you guys? Do you have creative ways to solve conflicts or attack iffy topics? How do you make sure that everyone is happy and feels like their voices are heard?