(tips, recommended reading, links)
Tips to move from Conflict to Communication click here for more info
Recommended Readings click here for more info
Referrals and Links click here for more info
Psychiatric Referrals click here for more info
Other Highly Respected Therapists click here for more info
Tips to move from Conflict to Communication
(These tips are useful in Romantic Relationships as well as parent child conflicts)
1. Be specific when introducing a problem
Don’t just complain; ask for a reasonable change or solution. Do not overload your partner w/ complaints, to do so, results in feelings of hopelessness and possibly a feeling of giving up.
2. Reality Checking
Repeat back what you heard and ask if it is correct. This is called reality checking and allows you to hear your partner and assures they feel understood, and vice versa. Both of you want to feel understood.
3.Pick your battles
Confine yourselves to one issue at a time. Otherwise without professional guidance, you may skip around, evading the important issues.
4. Do not sulk, pout, or be inflexible,
in other words be open to your own feelings and equally open to your partners, SET (YOUR EGO ASIDE) Remember both of you care about the relationship.
5. Consider compromise
Remember that your partner’s view of reality is just as real as yours, even though you may differ. There is no Objective Reality in relationships. Rarely are issues right and wrong or black and white. Is it more important to be right or be in this relationship?
6. Do not drudge up the past, stay in the Present
Changes and requests cannot change the past or be retroactive. Unfinished business, hurt or past grievances need to be brought up in a separate dialogue and not saved as weapons to use later.
7. Do not allow a “tit for tat” to enter the picture
An example would be, if your partner has an issue and you respond with your complaint. If you have a complaint, you have every right to bring it up in your own dialogue and why is it you did not bring it up before, only in response to your partner’s complaint? It sounds like a saved weapon to me.
8. No mind reading
Do not assume that you know what your partner is thinking until you have engaged in reality checking like “what I heard you say was… Is this correct?” “Mind-reading” does not exist. Sticking with “I” statements helps avoid this pitfall. “I perceive, I imagine, I feel, I want.” Do not correct their statements, by expressing what he/she should or should not do, feel or know.
9. No name calling, sarcasm or labels
Such as “ you are immature, emotional, etc.” Do not make sweeping, labeling judgments about his/her feelings, or whether or not they are real or important. Sarcasm is dirty fighting do not do it.
10. Time outs
Don’t be afraid, for both of your sakes to ask for a time-out to calm down and digest what has happened. Be mindful of the words you speak, as they cannot be taken back. Three rules in a time out, be clear about
1. personal responsibility, e.g. " I am having a hard time and need to stop"
2. How long this time out will last, (it is important to state when you will return or check in)
3. When you can talk again about the topic (even if at this designated time you still are not ready, follow through at that time and state when you think you may be able to try again, it is ok to keep delaying the appointment as long as you are communicating about it and intend to discuss it eventually.)
11.Remember there is not a single winner in an honest intimate conflict, both either win more intimacy or lose it.
Boundaries and Relationships Charles Whitfield click to purchase
Codependent No More Melody Beattie click to purchase
Healing the Child Within Charles Whitfield click to purchase
The Road Less Traveled M. Scott Peck click to purchase
Healing the Shame that Binds You John Bradshaw click to purchase
Homecoming John Bradshaw click to purchase
Radical Acceptance Tara Brach click to purchase
The New Codependency by Melody Beattie click to purchase
Feeling Good Together by David Burns click to purchase
Referrals and Links
24 hour Suicide Prevention - 877-727-4747
Department of Child Family Services - 800-540-4000
Adult Protective Services - 800-992-1660
1736 House Family Crisis Center - www.1736fcc.org
24 hour Support for homeless or troubled teens - (310) 379-3620
IEP Advocate - 213-389-2077
Parent Resource - 800-933-8133
Domestic Violence hotlines -
Alcoholics Anonymous Website www.aa.org
Non 12 step resource www.non12step.com
The Insight Center www.insightcenter.org
Economic resource www.thetreasurebox.org
South Bay Center for Counseling (low fee)
360 Sepulveda Blvd. Suite 2075
El Segundo CA, 90245
Airport Marina Counseling Center (low fee)
7891 La Tijera Blvd.
Westchester, CA 90045
Tel: (310) 670-1410
Fax: (310) 670-0919
Dr. Diego Learner (310) 540-4820
Dr. Sonja Agor (310)-464-6280, Children and ADD.
Other Highly Respected Therapists
Scott Polenz, MFT (310) 535-5602, Westchester
Brigitta Westall, PhD 310-478-9420, Long Beach and West LA