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Conflict, Influence and Problem Solving Gr. 12 Families in Canada.

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Presentation on theme: "Conflict, Influence and Problem Solving Gr. 12 Families in Canada."— Presentation transcript:

1 Conflict, Influence and Problem Solving Gr. 12 Families in Canada

2 Intro Couples in satisfying relationships are able to make decisions jointly and to agree on solutions to their problems They develop strategies by negotiating everyday details and establishing a shared meaning, or a mutual understanding of what their relationship means, in the early stage

3 Conflict in Relationships Conflict means the opposition of incompatible needs and principles The changing roles of men and women in a diverse post-industrial society, such as Canada, result in three related dilemmas for couple relationships ▫Individual vs. collective interest ▫Women’s rights vs. male entitlement ▫“mine” vs. “yours”

4 Top 10 Things People Say Add Tension to Marriage

5 Problems in Relationships In a 2001 study on contemporary North American Marriages, men and women who had taken a pre- marriage course with the Roman Catholic Church were asked to rate problems during the first five years of marriage In general, men and women identified the same issues: ▫Individual performance in the workplace vs. collective responsibility as a couple ▫Having enough money to afford the lifestyle a couple wants is a problem many couples face ▫Problems related to household tasks reflect the conflict of traditional male entitlement and women’s rights

6 Power and Influence Power is the ability to influence, at will, the behaviour of someone else Conflict theory explains that, in personal relationships, the person who has resources that the other needs has more power zFE zFE The principle of least interest explains that the person with the least commitment in the relationship actually has the greatest power since the person with the greater commitment is ore likely to give in to maintain harmony

7 Prehistoric Relationships Women’s reproductive and nurturing Resources Men’s support and physical protection

8 Industrial Society WomenMen Needed $ to buy goods & services Earned moneyWorked“unskilled”Household work

9 Power and Influence cont’d In contemporary relationships, the ability to meet the social and emotional needs of another is a source of power that motivates individuals to reciprocate in meeting each others needs All individuals require power in order to influence each other Though it may be the ideal, few couples are truly egalitarian (equal) ▫The actual balance of power does not matter as much as the couple’s shared perception that they negotiate solutions together

10 Power and Influence cont’d During childhood, boys are less likely to accept others’ influence than girls are Evolutionary psychology suggests: ▫boys are more biologically driven to compete to achieve an evolutionary advantage  They become men who want to solve problems alone ▫Girls are more co-operative, so they are more likely to accept others’ influence  They become women who want to solve problems together

11 Money, Housework and Power In traditional marriages, the division of labour, including the paid and unpaid work, was usually perceived by both partners as fair ▫Symbolic interactionism  men perceived that they had greater power because they were stronger and smarter than women and had more money. Therefore, men were entitled to make the decisions Contemporary companionate couples expect their relationship to be based on an equal division of labour and decision making

12 A study on division of labour The division of labour has become more equal in Canadian marriages As the total number of hours on paid work has increased, couples are doing less domestic work Can the division of labour be divided 50/50? ▫Is this possible to measure? ▫Why is it important to determine whether the division of labour is being divided equally?

13 MarriageCareer

14 Resolving conflict Psychologist Pamela Regan identified several strategies for managing conflict in relationships ▫Express opinions, positions and wants openly and honestly ▫Remain focused on the problem at hand ▫Try to understand the other persons perspective ▫Recognize your own influence on the interaction and the other person’s response ▫Respond with a positive, not negative attitude ▫Be willing to negotiate a solution that satisfies both partners

15 Solving Problems John Gottman says most marital conflict cannot be solved, but conflict does not necessarily ruin a marriage Conflict arises out of incompatible needs, values and principles ▫Differences in individual identity Based on observations of couples in a laboratory study, he says that successful conflict resolution is rarely seen. ▫Couples solve each problem as it occurs, but the underlying conflicts remain


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