Difficult Conversations – pt 2.

Making that difficult conversation about your marriage and/or divorce successful is usually one of degrees. Nothing about the conversation is going to be pleasant, but it can have a measured degree of success based upon how you are and what you say. How you are refers to your ability to stay on task, focused toward discussing the issues without spiraling into emotional quicksand. Obviously, what you say or how you say it also has an impact on the ability to keep the conversation on task.

When you feel the conversation slipping down that slop of anger and argument, return to your purpose. Stay calm and try to bring the conversation back around to your objective. You can do this by acknowledging the other person’s feeling, pain and anger, while pointing out what you are here to discuss.. Support their emotions without using verbal attacks, name calling or blaming the other for the failure of the marriage. Do not assume they will understand your point of view. They will not.

Finally, practice the conversation with a friend. Have them test your responses before holding the real conversation. But if even after practice, the real discussions still spiral into emotion, consider bringing in a professional divorce mediator to help keep the conversation on task. Often the presence of a neutral mediator can keep the issues at the center of the conversation.