I’ve been reading John Gottman’s book “Why Marriages Succeed or Fail” and found his four primary indicators of the eminent demise of a relationship fascinating. The first three indicators covered were criticism, contempt and defensiveness. Bringing all three to a culminating point, Gottman’s last horsemen for the destruction of a relationship is “stonewalling.”
Stonewalling often happens while a couple is talking. The stonewaller just removes himself by turning into a stone wall. Usually someone who is listening reacts to what the speaker is saying, looks at the speaker and says things like “uh hunh” or “hummmm” to let the speaker know he is tracking. But the stonewaller abandons these messages, replacing them with stony silence.
When we’ve interviewed stonewallers they often claim that Continue reading