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Voice Effects

You probably never thought about lowering your voice during an argument. You probably never heard about the power of reducing your volume when tempers flare and emotions spill over. Here's what you need to know:

A Podcast Series from The Family Institute

In this podcast episode, Neil Venketramen, staff therapist at The Family Institute, interviews Dr.

Sleepless Nights = Worse Fights

We know that hunger can leave us susceptible to poorly-handled arguments with a partner (see Nibble, Then Quibble).1 So, too, can insufficient sleep.

Who hasn't at times hated a loved one?

It happens in every intimate relationship, a moment when frustration or upset or disdain grows so large that the thought crosses the mind: I hate him / I hate her. Love and hate - they aren't opposites, and it's not a zero sum game where the more of one means the less of the other. Both feelings can stir, as they inevitably do.

90% of being a couple is just shouting "what?" from other rooms.

If you found that line even a little bit funny, here's what happened to your brain: an electrical wave traveled out through your cerebral cortex and your body experienced surprise, delight, perhaps an audible chuckle.

During (and after) moments of conflict, we tend to create, for ourselves and others, linear stories that focus on cause and effect, good and bad, winner and loser. "You showed up late for our dinner reservation and ruined my evening." It's a simplistic approach, black and white in its thinking.

“I’m sorry” doesn’t always end couple conflict in a satisfying way. Often something more is needed, an expression in words or actions that speaks to and “corrects” the underlying experience of one or both partners.

Boomerang Effect

Whether parents are living together or not, in a two-parent family it’s likely that one (or both) has spoken critically of the other — in the presence of the children. You can be so stubborn! a frustrated mother says to father as the children sit nearby. You don’t listen when I talk to you, father blurts into the cellphone while the kids

Marriage and the Heart

Marriage has earned a reputation for offering health advantages: longer and happier lives, fewer medical challenges. But “it’s not the case that any marriage is better than none.”i Some studies have found better health among divorced or single people as compared to spouses in high conflict/high stress marriages.

It’s an undeniable fact of family life: siblings bicker. Some studies suggest that young sibling conflict occurs an average of eight times per hour1. It can drive a parent crazy!