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Posted November 9, 2013
The thesis of this book is that each conflict or disagreement in
The thesis of this book is that each conflict or disagreement in marriage should be solved by working together to come to a solution that can be agreed to by both parties....enthusiastically. I think it had many good points and it made me think more critically about how I solve disagreements and problems in our marriage.
This book would be good if you and your spouse are looking for a complete overhaul in the way you approach conflict in your marriage. He recommends a systematic strategy using a notebook and says that if you can't come to an enthusiastic agreement then you shouldn't do anything and you should just table the discussion until both sides can enthusiastically agree. I appreciate the encouragement to not just reluctantly agree to something in the name of 'serving' your spouse. He details the pitfalls of that attitude in the first few chapters.
But ultimately I think that the book does not have enough practical advice about how to actually reach enthusiastic agreement when there are two sinful people involved. I found myself disagreeing with many things he suggested. For example, he discusses in one place how if your spouse doesn't like being around your parents because your parents are not kind to him/her then you should just tell your parents that you won't be coming to visit them until they start being nicer to your spouse. I guess I would agree if there is some kind of emotional abuse of your spouse going on, but I think that most conflicts are two sided and that your spouse would be responsible for some part of the issue.
So unless you and your spouse are both committed to trying out the system then there are probably other marriage books that would be more beneficial. Ironically, both spouses need to be enthusiastic about trying this out for it to work. I was also turned off by the numerous times that he mentioned how he and his wife used these principles to have such a wonderful marriage. I get that he has 50 years of experience, but it came across as prideful instead of encouraging.
Overall it was worth a read but wouldn't be my new go to marriage book.
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