blaming "I" statements should lead into problem-solving and better
relations. A no-lose approach would work better (see method #10).
Effectiveness, advantages and dangers
There is little or no research assessing the effectiveness of this
method, although several writers praise it, as I do.
There are certain apparent advantages as mentioned above. "I"
statements do not offend as much; they may reduce defiance and
encourage compliance. Also, as you formulate "I" statements in your
own head, you become more aware of your true feelings. Likewise,
explaining yourself to another person often clears up your own
thinking and views about a troublesome situation.
"I" statements are more likely to improve a relationship, certainly
better than demanding, whining, asking accusatory questions,
manipulating, accusing, and criticizing will do. There are no known
dangers, except the problems mentioned in e above.
Ciaramicoli, A. I. & Ketcham, K. (2001). The power of empathy.
Gordon, T. (1975). Parent effectiveness training. New York:
Peter H. Wyden, Inc.
Johnson, D. (1981). Reaching out: Interpersonal effectiveness
and self-actualization. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Expressing Anger Constructively
Expressing anger constructively; Fair fighting.
Anger has been discussed in great detail in chapter 7, and some in
chapters 9 and 10. It is an emotion of tremendous importance; it is
perhaps the underlying cause for the most serious human problems,
such as heart attacks, neglect, abuse, divorce, violence, prejudice,
war, and others. Certainly, anger is a clear signal that something is
wrong in a relationship; if uncorrected, it destroys love.
Most long-term relationships encounter conflicts, irritation or anger
occasionally. Anger is a hard emotion to handle, partly because many
of us have been taught that we shouldn't get mad. Also, most of us
have had no training or good models for coping with anger. On the