RESOLVING ISSUES BETWEEN COUPLES

When problems reach a boiling point between a couple, a third party is sometimes called in to mediate between them.

This is very common in my part of the world. I do not really sanction a third party interference but it helps when it is well handled. I was invited to mediate between a couple that I respect so much and I had to be tactical in handling the problem because I didn’t want to fuel an already inflamed issue.

The husband and wife were both stubborn, non was ready to sheath his or her sword. Both were at each other’s throat and they flared up like a keg of gun powder. Each triggered by every little word the other said.

The husband claimed his wife is arrogant and disrespectful to him, his family and friends. While the wife said the husband constantly calls her nasty names and abandoned her at home. Their marriage was obviously heading for the rocks.

I asked if they were still interested in the marriage, but non answered me. Psychologically I knew there was still a way to mend things between them, since they both gave no affirmative answer to my question.

Whenever you’re invited to mediate between couples, please don’t rush in and start dishing out blames. Don’t be quick to judge or you will end up creating more problems and you may be perceived as a common enemy of the couple.

You have to first study the situation at hand, plead for calmness and counsel them individually. The aim of counseling them individually is to allow each partner to talk without the other interrupting. Listen to what they have to say and proffer solutions. By the time you bring them together, they will be willing and ready to work things out.

It takes wisdom and patience to resolve issues between couples, so apply breaks when you’re called upon. Guide your utterances and don’t allow the fight to degenerate into a bigger issue.

Please be fair in your judgement and don’t be seen as taking sides, especially if you’re related to one of the couple.

If you don’t have the wisdom to amicably resolve the issue, please don’t say anything that will aggravate an already tensed situation. Plead with both parties and walk away instead of causing more trouble.

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