17

Communication and Respect

KEY IDEAS

→ Each partner should make a serious effort to learn about the other’s worldview.

→ Some differences matter (much) more than others; each partner should define his or her own negotiables and nonnegotiables.

→ Respect for individuals is nonnegotiable; respect for ideas is not.

→ Dogmatic thinking by either partner is the greatest obstacle to communication and compromise.

→ Research indicates that mixed-belief couples often exhibit particular strength in communicating to work out differences.

→ Contrary to conventional wisdom, avoiding sensitive topics is not always a bad idea.

→ One of the greatest sources of tension and conflict for a mixed-belief couple is the strong desire of one or both partners ...

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