Friendship is an important aspect of happiness and well-being. And, in marriage, friendship is considered very important now in our current times. Some people do not have any close friends other than their spouse. Having friends (other than a spouse) is especially difficult for those people who move to different cities for career changes. Of course this puts a lot expectation and pressure on marriage. It will be inevitable that differences in opinion will arise, and knowing how to work through that is of utmost importance.
Here are some links to some very good information which explains a major source of conflict in marriage -- if one (or both partners) are "other-blamers" -- how to recognize it and what to do.
Other-Blamers manage the feeling of shame with a lack of accountability. The key behavioral sign is hyper-vigilance to and over-reactivity to criticism. Other-Blamers tend to argue or attack to keep any taint of blame from landing close.While these strategies provide comfort to the individual, they are counterproductive in relationships. Other-Blaming is often at the root of relationship problems, because of the reluctance to admit fault.
In some people, the experience of shame triggers a fearful response, overwhelming the cognitive functioning of the brain, leading to fear-based behaviors of reacting rather than responding thoughtfully.
They are highly motivated to manage their shame and fear and respond with three predictable and easily identified behavioral responses called Counterproductive Shame Management Strategies:
- Blame Avoiding
The simple key to understanding the three Shame Management Strategies is the answer to this question: How does the person handle criticism?
When held accountable for a behavior, what does the person do?
- blame others
- blame themselves, or
- preemptively try to avoid blame
Be sure to read both of following links, if you are interested in learning more.