1. HARSH STARTUP
1 = True
2 = False
When we discuss our issues:
1. My partner is often very critical of me.
2. I hate the way my partner raises an issue.
3. Arguments often seem to come out of nowhere.
4. Before I know it we are in a fight.
5. When my partner complains I feel picked on.
6. I seem to always get blamed for issues.
7. My partner is negative all out of proportion.
8. I feel I have to ward off personal attacks.
9. I often have to deny charges leveled against me.
10.My partner’s feelings are too easily hurt.
11.What goes wrong is often not my responsibility.
12.My partner criticizes my personality.
13.Issues get raised in an insulting manner.
14.My partner will at times complain in a smug or superior way.
15.I have just about had it with all this negativity between us.
16.I feel basically disrespected when my partner complains.
17.I just want to suddenly leave the scene when complaints arise.
18.Our calm is suddenly shattered.
19.I think my partner’s negativity is unnerving and unsettling.
20.I think my partner can be totally irrational.
2. THE FOUR HORSEMEN
When we discuss our issues:
1. I feel attacked or criticized when we talk about our disagreements.
2. I usually feel like my personality is being assaulted.
3. In our disputes‚ at times‚ I don’t even feel like my partner likes me very much.
4. I have to defend myself because the charges against me are so unfair.
5. I often feel unappreciated by my partner.
6. My feelings and intentions are often misunderstood.
7. I don’t feel appreciated for all the good I do in this relationship.
8. I often just want to leave the scene of the arguments.
9. I get disgusted by all the negativity between us.
10.I feel insulted by my partner at times.
11.I sometimes just clam up and become quiet.
12.I can get mean and insulting in our disputes.
13.I feel basically disrespected.
14.Many of our issues are just not my problem.
15.The way we talk makes me want to just withdraw from the whole relationship.
16.I think to myself “Who needs all this conflict?”
17.My partner never really changes.
18.Our problems have made me feel desperate at times.
19.My partner doesn’t face issues responsibly and maturely.
20.I try to point out flaws in my partner’s personality that need improvement.
21.I feel explosive and out of control about our issues at times.
22.My partner uses phrases like “You always” or “You never” when complaining.
23.I often get the blame for what are really our problems.
24.I don’t have a lot of respect for my partner’s position on our basic issues.
25.My partner can be quite selfish and self-centered.
26.I feel disgusted by some of my partner’s attitudes.
27.My partner gets far too emotional.
28.I am just not guilty of the many things I am accused of.
29.Small issues often escalate out of proportion.
30.Arguments seem to come out of nowhere‚
31.My partner’s feelings get hurt too easily.
32.I often will become silent to cool things down a bit.
33.My partner has a lot of trouble being rational and logical.
3. GRIDLOCK ON PERPETUAL ISSUES
When we discuss our problems:
1. The same problems keep coming up again and again in our relationship.
2. We rarely make much progress on our central issues.
3. We keep hurting each other whenever we discuss our core issues.
4. I feel criticized and misunderstood when we discuss our hot topics. 5. My partner has a long list of basically unreasonable demands.
5. My partner has a long list of basically unreasonable demands.
6. When we discuss our basic issues‚ I often feel that my partner doesn’t even like me.
7. My partner wants me to change my basic personality.
8. I often keep quiet and withdraw to avoid stirring up too much conflict.
9. I don’t feel respected when we disagree.
10.My partner often acts in a selfish manner.
11.What I say in our discussions rarely has much effect.
12.I feel put down in our discussions of key issues.
13.I can’t really be myself in this relationship.
14.I often think that my partner is manipulating me.
15.Sometimes I think that my partner doesn’t care about my feelings.
16.My partner rarely makes a real effort to change.
17.There are some basic faults in my partner’s personality that he or she will not change.
18.My partner disregards my fundamental needs.
19.Sometimes I feel that my values don’t matter to my partner.
20.When we discuss our issues‚ my partner acts as if I am totally wrong and he or she is totally right.
4. ACCEPTING INFLUENCE
When we discuss our problems:
1. I find that I am really interested in my partner’s opinion on our basic issues.
2. I usually learn a lot from my partner even when we disagree.
3. I want my partner to feel that what he or she says really counts with me.
4. I generally want my partner to feel influential in this relationship.
5. I can listen to my partner.
6. My partner has a lot of basic common sense.
7. I try to communicate respect even during our disagreements.
8. I don’t keep trying to convince my partner so that I will eventually win out.
9. I don’t reject my partner’s opinions out of hand.
10.My partner is rational enough to take seriously when we discuss our issues.
11.I believe in lots of give and take in our discussions.
12.I am very persuasive‚ but don’t usually try to win arguments with my partner.
13.I feel important in our decisions.
14.My partner usually has good ideas.
15.My partner is basically a great help as a problem solver.
16.I try to listen respectfully even when I disagree.
17.My ideas for solutions are not better than my partner’s.
18.I can usually find something to agree with in my partner’s position.
19.My partner is not usually too emotional.
20.I am not the one who needs to make the major decisions in this relationship.
During our attempts to resolve conflicts between us:
1. Our decisions often get made by both of us compromising.
2. We are usually good at resolving our differences.
3. I can give in when I need to‚ and often do.
4. I can be stubborn in an argument but I’m not opposed to compromising.
5. I think that sharing power in a relationship is very important.
6. My partner is not a very stubborn person.
7. I don’t believe one person is usually right and the other wrong on most issues.
8. We both believe in meeting each other half way when we disagree.
9. I am able to yield somewhat even when I feel strongly on an issue.
10.The two of us usually arrive at a better decision through give and take.
11.It’s a good idea to give in somewhat‚ in my view.
12.In discussing issues we can usually find our common ground of agreement.
13.Everyone gets some of what they want when there is a compromise.
14.My partner can give in‚ and often does.
15.I don’t wait until my partner gives in before I do.
16.When I give in first my partner then gives in too.
17.Yielding power is not very difficult for my partner.
18.Yielding power is not very difficult for me.
19.Give and take in making decisions is not a problem in this relationship.
20.I will compromise even when I believe I am right.
Friendship & Intimacy
• Love Maps
• Fondness and Admiration
• Turning Toward or Away
• Emotional Distance and Loneliness
• Harsh Startup
• The Four Horsemen
• Gridlock on Perpetual Issues
• Accepting Influence
• Negative Sentiment Override
• Effective Repair Attempts
• Shared Meaning Rituals
• Shared Meaning Roles
• Shared Meaning Goals
• Shared Meaning Symbols
Gottman‚ J. M. (1999). The marriage clinic: A scientifically based marital therapy. New York‚ NY: W.W. Norton & Company
Gottman‚ J.M. & Silver‚ N. (1999). The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work. New York‚ NY: Crown Publishers‚ Inc.