Skip to content

Hearing the longing in the complaint

August 16, 2013

Here’s a great idea…
In his book, 10 Lessons That Will Transform Your Marriage, John Gottman tells us to,
“look for the longing in each other’s complaints” (p. 19).

In other words…
If we can get past the words and tone of our partners’ complaints and can practice compassion, we may see and understand the underlying feelings that prompted the complaint. They may be trying to make requests of us. Rather than react defensively, we can tune in to their longing and strengthen our relationships.

Here’s how you can use this idea to have a better life…
Don’t take a complaint as an attack. Your partner’s complaint may be a plea for understanding. For example, if the complaint is “You never cook anymore,” you could argue that you cooked once last week. But that misses the point. Choose instead to ask whether your partner would like to have more home-cooked meals. Search for ways to help your spouse feel loved and cared for.

To find out more…
about couple relationships, check out The Marriage Garden or the Getting Our Hearts Right program at arfamilies.org, follow us at facebook.com/navigatinglife or contact your local county Extension agent. You may also like to read 10 Lessons That Will Transform Your Marriage

2 Comments
  1. August 18, 2013 1:02 pm

    Aw, this was a very nice post. Throughout idea I would like to put in writing like this additionally sgjgmzp taking time along with actual effort to make a very good article… but so what can I say… My spouse and i procrastinate a lot and by zero means manage to get something carried out.

  2. August 19, 2013 8:32 pm

    you have a fantastic blog here! would you like to make some invite blogposts on my blog?

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: