Category Archives: marriage

Is There Such a Thing as a Good Fight?

Mike and I didn’t fight well in the first several years of our marriage.  We were both the oldest child in our respective families.  Combined with the overwhelming need to be right and coming from dysfunctional households, our arguments tended to get nasty very quickly. I was the main culprit with a cruel tongue and, at times, a vindictive nature.

When he and I both look back on those days we are amazed that we are still together.  In July we will celebrate our 16th wedding anniversary!  Praise the Lord.

Marriage counseling helped us tremendously.  We learned how to fight.  We were not taught NOT to fight.  Let’s face it- living with someone 24-7, 365 days a year is not possible without some friction.  We were taught HOW to fight.  How to express our differences of opinion, our needs, our desires and most of all our love for one another in a healthy manner.  While we will probably never have this mastered, our disagreements are calm compared to how we dealt with them in the past.

I recently received The Good Fight: How Conflict Can Bring You Closer
When I finished reading it I immediately thought “I wish I had read this book 16 years ago”.  My next thought was that I will be gifting it to newlyweds in years to come.  Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott are veteran marriage counselors and are married to each other.  They are also best selling authors of several books dealing with marriage.

The book includes their C.O.R.E principle, which relates to their recommended elements of a “good fight”.  Cooperation, ownership, respect and empathy are key to disagreeing in a way that allows the other person to hear your point without becoming defensive.  The book also includes topics such as:

  • Why a “good fight” is the secret to a happy marriage
  • Leveraging your personal fight types (this was a particularly interesting section to me.  Mike and I are similar in some ways but also very different. Our fighting types are very different and it was helpful to read about how the different types can successfully approach each other in an argument)
  • Fighting through The Big Five- money, sex, work, parenting and housework
  • The 7 rules of Fight Club

This book is filled with practical advice from a couple with 25 years of marriage and doctorate degrees under their belt.  I encourage you to check it out.

**This post contains affiliate links.

25 Ways to Keep Your Love Alive

The hubby and I have been married for 15 years, together for 17.  He still makes my heart race.  He is my best friend, my fiercest advocate and my rock, soft enough to lay my head on, tough enough to stay with me for all these years. Our marriage has been full of ups andContinue Reading

2012 in Review

Wow!  2012 was one for the record books for the Smallwood family.  In terms of milestones, this year was chock full of ’em. Shayla graduated with her certified nursing assistant license in March and started her nursing career. Attended her first college classes. Got married. Moved into their first place {and out of ours} and turnedContinue Reading

5 Ways to Help Your Husband Feel Loved

    Source: via Emi on Pinterest Mike and I had the privilege of escaping for 10 kid free, work free, responsibility free days in September to celebrate our 15th wedding anniversary. We had a wonderful time together. A few days ago, my hubby remarked that we needed to plan a cruise every yearContinue Reading

Moments Like This

Sunday, my daughter will become a wife.   I will return with regular posting {actually a 31 day series} October 1st. Appreciate your love and prayers in the meantime!

Wedding Bells and Setting Sail

Our sweet daughter, Shayla, and Sweet Pea’s dad, Chris are getting married in less than 2 months!  September 30th to be exact.  We are so excited and beyond blessed to see how God has brought them together and to Him over the {almost} two years since Sweet Pea was born.     When I’m notContinue Reading

The best kind of Dad

He didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.  ~Clarence Budington Kelland I could not be more thankful that God chose Mike to be my hubby and the father of our children.  However each child has joined our family, his love, devotion, direction and affection doesn’t differ.  HeContinue Reading

Living Your Priorities

I hinted in my last post that I have had some surrendering to do lately. But, first let me tell you a story about a king named Saul and a time when he did what he thought was good, rather than what God had asked him to do. {That is not a recipe for success,Continue Reading

Our Love Story {not quite what you would expect}

Happy Valentine’s Day!  Whether you are married or single, I think this commercial holiday can be a good excuse to thank God for the people He has placed in your life to love- be it friends, children, a spouse and those He has called you to serve.  Please know that I love and pray forContinue Reading

Love is…

Love is… watching your husband love on a baby, having opened his heart and life to the unexpected and embracing it for all it is worth. Love is… a teenager playing with a little cousin, making them laugh and admitting they had a good time, too. Love is… opening your heart and trusting God toContinue Reading