No one likes criticism, especially when it comes from the nearest person. Therefore, in one of the previous articles, I wrote to you about the way in which I think it is right to express things that interfere with them, without moving in a critical way that will cause the listener to “lock”, defend, or attack back.
But, the world is not perfect, and we often get criticized, and here’s the listener’s part, to prevent the escalation, and to react effectively.
It is not simple, because criticism generates an instinctive and automatic response that is hard to avoid. In most cases people respond to criticism in one of three things:

Defending and denying your partner’s claims – ‘It’s not true that I’m always late, you’re just exaggerating’.
“You always see only the bad things I do, what about all the efforts I invest all the time for you?”
Counter attack – ‘I’m late ?! What about you?! When did you last arrive in time somewhere ?! ‘
All these methods are ineffective because they only deepen the conflict and invite more and more negative responses, so that a negative cycle of escalation begins.

How to respond to criticism effectively
As hard as it sounds – the most effective way to respond to criticism is … to accept it!

It may sound strange and difficult to implement, but the defensive response is ineffective, and certainly not the counterattack.

Of course, I do not intend to say that you should accept all of it, but it is very worthwhile to look for something specific where you can accept the criticism.

For example, in the situation described above, in which the husband visits his wife for being late, she does not have to agree that she is always late, but she can say: ‘You are right, I was late and I did not remember to announce, and I am sure it was not pleasant for you.’

If the woman feels that the inclusion that the husband has done (“you’re always late”) is not fair, the time to talk about it is in a calm conversation, and not in anger. Therefore, during the time itself it is recommended to respond as I described here, and in the evening, when sitting on a cup of coffee, she can say to him: ‘Do you know? This morning when you said I was always late I felt it was unfair. I make a lot of efforts to get there on time, and I am very much getting better at it, and it’s important for me not to allow every time I delay canceling all these efforts. ”

When things are said in a calm time, without anger, there is a much better chance that the husband will accept the things and apologize for the generalization.

Another example – this time about the husband:

When a woman is angry at her husband for not answering her phones during the day, there is no point in him being:

(“Why do you say I do not answer, I answered your phone at noon”).
“Why do you always attack me? Can not you see how hard I’m trying?”).
Or attack her back (‘You’d think you’re answering phones’).
Instead it’s better that he just gets the review or its share. He can say something like, ‘You’re right, I’m sure it was not pleasant for you to call again and again without an answer, I apologize that I was so busy and did not answer.’

If he still feels that the criticism was not fair, the right time to say it is when the anger calms down and then it is possible to talk effectively.

Second marriage – difficulties with the children of the partner


I am married a second time (I did not have children) and my husband came into marriage with two previous marriages. They are good children who love them and I love them. But … their very existence makes me feel sick, having a relationship with his ex-wife, the high alimony he pays and the attention they demand. We have two children in common and as time goes on I can not get used to this reality and I feel like it’s “bigger than me”. My husband understands me but on the other hand he is a wonderful father (not only to his great-grandchildren), whose children do what they want with him (taking as much money and manipulating him all day). Sometimes he wants a divorce but is afraid of the children. I would be happy to have an advise.

You describes a marriage system in which the relationship sounds very good. Your husband understands your difficulties, even though they meet him in a very difficult place for him.

In addition, you say that his children are good children, and are in good relationship with you. One of the most significant difficulties in a second marriage is to make contact with the partner’s children in a healthy manner.

It sounds like you’ve set up a wonderful new family, and you have a lot to celebrate.

At the same time, you describe considerable difficulties, which stem from the difficulty in accepting the reality in which the heart of your husband is actually divided between you and his children.

It’s not easy, but it’s important to understand that this is a fact of life in a second marriage.

With all the difficulty, it is very important that you realize that to a certain extent you are placing your husband in an impossible situation. Your husband is secretly required to choose between the people most dear to him, that is, his or her children.

I think that the best for you and for him is for you to accept that his children will always be dear to him, and he will try to invest the best for them.

A second marriage is always a complex thing, but your marriage is a wonderful marriage, which you wish to lose.

Only after you can bring yourself to a place of acceptance of this fact can you talk to him about the limits that you think he should place on his children. As of now, you are emotionally involved, so you can help him in a constructive and constructive way, so I recommend that you keep your education at his discretion.

As for the relationship with his ex-wife, if it is a relationship that seems to go beyond the limits of the essential and necessary relationship for the common purpose of the children, talk to your husband about it. But take into account that in this matter, too, you must accept that a certain relationship is necessary because they are jointly responsible for the education of dear and beloved children.

If you find it difficult to accept things, I suggest that you find a psychotherapist in your area and work with it.

What do the couple ask each other?

When two people decide to marry each other, they have different expectations about the relationship that will be built. Realizing these expectations will make them happy in their marriage, while their rigor will make it very difficult to feel happy.

I do not deal with this vision of the establishment of the family – which undoubtedly has a central place and very important in itself – but the simple sense of happiness that occurs when the couple feel that the relationship fulfills their hopes. This feeling of happiness is also a basis for realizing the shared vision of the two partners and without it they will usually sink into difficult feelings and tensions that will make it very difficult for them to deal with the vision.

For different people, there are different expectations of the marital relationship, but there is one common general expectation – everyone wants to build a warm and safe nest for themselves. Or in other words, everyone wants a relationship in which they will feel loved, safe and relaxed. In professional language, this is called a secure attachment, which we need from our parents from birth to adolescence, and then we need it in the relationship we build.

It sounds very simple, but in practice we find many couples caught in negative circles of tension and distance, who feel insecure and warm, in a way that both partners lose.

What delays the creation of secure attachment in order to establish a good and stable relationship?
Absurdly, many couples find themselves in an endless struggle with each other, when in fact each expresses his anger at the fact that his engagement is not as secure as he expected.

I will demonstrate this:

Ami and Ronit have been married for 20 years but their marriage is not so good. Ami believes that Ronit is a nervous person because she complains about his attitude toward her. Her complaints are often accompanied by angry outbursts that are very difficult to calm. Ronit, on the other hand, claims that Ami is an indifferent and irritating person, because every time she turns to him with a complaint or request, he makes a noncommittal answer, but does not relate to her feelings and desires.

After careful examination, it turns out that each of them feels that his deep expectations about the relationship are violated:

Ami feels attacked all the time, so he can not feel safe within the marital system. In response, he retreated to a distant position perceived as indifference by Ronit.

Ronit, on the other hand, feels that Ami is not emotionally available to her. His distance makes her try to force him to respond to her, and to this end she uses high tones and extreme statements that make Ami feel attacked.

It is easy to see the negative circle in which the couple is trapped, each of them thirsty for a sense of safe attachment, but in fact, in frustration, causes the other to lock even more in its harmful patterns. The more defensive and self-protective Ami is, the more Ronit attacks him. The more Ronit attacks my people, the more withdrawn Ami is. Needless to say, it is very difficult to establish a good relationship out of this dynamic.

How to establish a secure connection?
In order to establish a safe connection, it is important to get used to talking about the real needs instead of trying to fight for the needs of the attachment.

Instead of closing in, Ami can explain to Ronit that he wants to listen to her, but that when he attacks him, he feels the need to defend himself and shut himself off. After explaining this, he can ask her to say things more calmly, and to ensure listening. This will make it easier for Ami to listen, and Ronit will find that the effort to speak calmly pays off.

Alternatively, instead of attacking Ami, Ronit can explain to him that his seclusion frustrates her and makes her even more angry. She can tell him that she understands his need to defend himself, to make sure to try to speak more calmly, and to ask him to listen.

Talking about communication needs leads to much closer and more effective communication, but it is not easy to change old patterns that have already become automated responses. Therefore, I recommend trying to practice this form of speech, and if you do not succeed alone, I invite you to come to my clinic and practice things.

Couples who learn to communicate in this way discover that good couple communication can be established, and that the couple bond is strengthened so that it is a safe basis for both partners, in which both will feel loved, safe and relaxed.

Solving family conflicts

Solving family conflicts

Developing skills to deal with conflicts is an important developmental task for children of all ages. Idit Meir, coordinator of groups of parents and couples, certified by the Adler Institute and the Ministry of Education, explains extensively and provides practical advice for solving family problems
The conflict is defined in the dictionary as a conflict, confrontation, struggle, a difficult situation created by opposing perceptions or interests that clash with one another and may lead to division or division. A clash between two or more persons who attempt to achieve the same goal, when achieving it in the hands of the other will prevent its attainment by the other.
The conflict may be accompanied by feelings of disagreement, helplessness, disappointment, worry, fear, insult, damage to self-worth, and more.
There are common lines in the conflict process and its solution:
Lack of awareness of the existence of the conflict
* The formation of awareness of conflict, which leads to an attempt to avoid or deny it
* The formation of escalation in the situation, which makes the existence of the conflict inevitable
* Find the real source of the problem
* Finding a solution
* Preparation of a detailed agreement that falls within a predefined time and examination at the end of the period
everything stays in the family
Differences of opinion between people and within the family occur in the daily routine and constitute an inseparable part of life. Conflicts may be caused by different priorities, damage to value, gap in perception, competition, distribution of resources, lack of listening, disrespect, arrogance, unwillingness to change and openness, breach of boundaries, lack of trust,
In a normative situation, there are several principles necessary to maintain a good family atmosphere, alongside the presence of conflicts within it: listening, tolerance and patience, empathy, openness and honesty, mutual respect, desire for consideration and reciprocity.
Developing skills to deal with conflicts begins in the family and in the child’s immediate environment. This is an important developmental task for children because they spend a lot of time with their siblings, friends, and interpersonal interactions throughout life.

Conflict resolution

Giving the right tools to solve problems in the family and a personal example of the parents will prepare the children for success in interpersonal interactions throughout their lives.
Professor Rudolf Dreikurs, the founder of the Adlerian theory and one of the founders of the Adler Institute in Israel, presented a model of four stages of conflict resolution:
Speaking out of mutual respect and equality.
Identifying the real problem through conversation and providing a personal interpretation of the situation, in order to examine what is behind the desire of each side. Through self-testing and understanding (ads), and then explaining to the other side.

Brainstorming – raising suggestions for resolving the conflict.

Write down all the suggestions for a solution and rank it: it is desirable, it is possible to try, it is out of the question.
Agreement – according to the desired solution to the parties concerned. Each agreement is limited in time, clarifying who does what and what happens if not. It is possible to check at the end of time whether the agreement met the test of reality or became a new conflict.
Family conflicts can have different effects on a child’s development, depending on the strategies taken to resolve the conflict.

Children who have experienced the conflict with parents who listen, explain, guide and compromise have grown to be better socially adaptable as early as the age of six. When they encounter conflict with their friends, they can solve the conflict between parents and children. The same way of explaining and explaining, as they experienced in their home.

Practical advice for solving family problems

Since the pattern of behavior in finding a solution to resolving differences begins at home at an early age, it is useful to know and develop early infant habits:
A personal example – parents are a powerful and powerful factor in shaping relationships. They should also be used as a model for children in differences of opinion, to demonstrate different opinions as long as it is done from a place of dignity without vulnerability, insult or contempt. Such a model can teach children how to conduct a dialogue, consisting of opposing opinions, and reach negotiations based on respectful rules and mutual respect, tolerance and listening to the other side.
It is important to know that escalating conflict into a quarrel, from a place of mutual disrespect (not differences of opinion, based on respect and listening) in the presence of children, especially in matters of education, is a negative thing that is liable to harm and lead to the weakening of parental authority. In particular, may have a negative impact on the atmosphere and the entire family system.
A joint brainstorming creates a sense of togetherness, a feeling of equality and respect and mutual responsibility in the family. From this respectable place, it is possible for children to share their parents with everything that happens to them, even when it comes to unpleasant experiences and situations.
Sharing and consultation are the essence of encouragement and good relations. These tools include a dimension of intimacy, warmth, a sense of belonging and self-worth, as they are an open and close communication that helps build relationships between people, parents and children in particular.
Dialogue in an open conversation – It is worthwhile initiating a real conversation that includes elements of full and honest listening, empathy, mutual respect and understanding. These help to solve problems, allow and provide a good sense of warmth that stems from the very listening and sharing experience, as well as feelings of calmness, openness and trust. The family conversation was meant to raise controversial issues or issues that could not be solved.
Advantages of family conversation
* The possibility of sharing, consultation, giving / taking responsibility, exercising judgment, brainstorming.
* Training in selection and its consequences, consideration and learning from a democratic place that will accompany the child throughout his or her future life.
* Opportunity to open territories in the family – in this framework, anyone can contribute ideas to volunteer to fulfill tasks and practice in ways different from those he is accustomed to.
* An opportunity to share barely in a supportive and encouraging environment without criticism, insult or guilt.
* An opportunity to resolve recurring quarrels and rivalries. The conversation allows for a thorough examination of the problem and an attempt to reach a solution and an agreement.
Tips for successful family conversation
Various topics – It is worthwhile to integrate in the family conversation, among other things, joint designs,

Family conflicts

Family conflicts

Treatment of the elderly parent sometimes places the family in a situation that requires coping with repeated crises. This situation can lead to conflicts that should be resolved quickly in order to continue caring for the parent.

What are the causes of conflicts between caregivers?

Since the treatment sometimes necessitates reunification of the family unit, the reasons for the conflicts between the family members at this time often derive from past relations between them. The new closeness is liable to “resurrect” the old system of forces and problems that have not been solved in the past, and may now rise and rise again, to which problems and controversies related to the treatment approach.

What are the main types of conflicts?

Past problems that recur – Intensive care again raises conflicts between parents and children and the brothers themselves. Parents tend to show dissatisfaction with their children’s choices and try to retain the role of responsible parent, even though they are now the ones who become dependent and in need of treatment. The brothers also come up with conflicts related to the past and the attitude they received from their parents. If one of the brothers is considered to be the “preferred son,” the jealousy toward him will come back suddenly, even if there is no basis for it.

Controversies over how to treat and finance it – “2 Jews, 3 opinions” The saying goes, and so does the treatment of a family member. Everyone has an opinion about what to do, where to take care of what the family can do without help. These conflicts may lead to further conflict, which revolves around economic issue and payments for treatment.

Controversy over the distribution of treatment – If the child is treated at home, the treatment should be decided. In most cases, most of the treatment is done by one family member, a “primary caregiver”. This has implications for his independence, and for the care of his own family, and may lead to resentment and anger toward the others, whom he deems insufficiently helpful.

How can conflict be avoided?

In order to avoid conflicts, it is always worthwhile to think ahead. Once the need for treatment is identified, it is recommended to do two things:

Offer of help – the other side of the coin. Sometimes the “primary caregiver” will refuse to leave the patient and will want to continue treating at any cost. Here the other family members should offer their help and make it clear to him that he needs a short rest and that they can help as well.

Professional assistance – Sometimes addressing a qualified professional can solve the problem. The outsider sees the conflict objectively and is able to offer neutral solutions that will satisfy all members of the family and help organize.

Conflicts within the family during treatment are something to be treated immediately and, if possible, even before treatment begins. A quick solution will bring clarity and clarity to the treatment, which will become more pleasant and give the patient a better feeling. So, try to talk about the problems even if it is not simple sometimes

Have a family conversation about the situation – share with the whole family, and make them part of the treatment, even if they are far away. Communication between family members is very important, because it is a supportive environment for the therapist that also helps in making important decisions. However, family members who do not care should remember not to be critical of the therapist and understand his condition. To criticize is always easy, but you have to think whether you would have acted otherwise, if you were the caregivers.

Division of treatment – equal distribution in treatment can be problematic because each member of the family has a different schedule and needs. Therefore, it is recommended to think together about what each person can give, whether it is in the day to day care or whether it is in dealing with documents or financial matters and, accordingly, to divide the treatment.

How do we get out of the conflict?

Talk about it – so simple and so hard. Sometimes there are issues on which they do not speak in the family, and the renewed stay together brings them up. But when you do not talk about things, they stay in the air and make it difficult to continue treatment. An honest conversation may solve this situation.

Asking for help – Sharing family experiences, feelings, difficulties can help them understand what the main therapist is dealing with. Asking for help from other family members may help you cope.