• The High-Conflict Couple

  • A Dialectical Behavior Therapy Guide to Finding Peace, Intimacy, and Validation
  • By: Alan E. Fruzzetti PhD
  • Narrated by: Vanessa Daniels
  • Length: 6 hrs and 22 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (162 ratings)

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The High-Conflict Couple

By: Alan E. Fruzzetti PhD
Narrated by: Vanessa Daniels
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Publisher's Summary

You hear and read a lot about ways to improve your relationship. But if you've tried these without much success, you're not alone. Many highly reactive couples - pairs that are quick to argue, anger, and blame - need more than just the run-of-the-mill relationship advice to solve their problems in love. When destructive emotions are at the heart of problems in your relationship, no amount of effective communication or intimacy building will fix what ails it. If you're part of a high-conflict couple, you need to get control of your emotions first, to stop making things worse, and only then work on building a better relationship.

The High-Conflict Couple adapts the powerful techniques of dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) into skills you can use to tame out-of-control emotions that flare up in your relationship. Using mindfulness and distress tolerance techniques, you'll learn how to deescalate angry situations before they have a chance to explode into destructive fights. You'll discover ways to manage problems with negotiation, not conflict, and to find true acceptance and closeness with the person you love the most.

©2006 Alan E. Fruzzetti (P)2016 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Fruzzetti's focused use of the specialized dialectical behavior therapy makes his book unique in the couples-therapy field and recommends it for larger public libraries." ( Library Journal)

What listeners say about The High-Conflict Couple

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    3 out of 5 stars

Notations Should be Left in the Written Version

It is very hard to listen to a behavior therapy book and follow the train of thought when every other sentence has notations and references listed regarding where the data came from. Important information,I know. You have to credit your sources, and reference appropriate studies and papers, however, in the middle of an audio book is not the place for that. It breaks up the whole flow of the message and makes it very hard to listen to or care about. I am 30 minutes into a 6 hour book and am already annoyed. I will attempt to continue and change the overall and story ratings when done, but performance will stay at 1 star.

21 people found this helpful

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Big words, but solutions made for 2 yr olds

Im really disappointed in this book. At the beginning, its inundated with big words like ‘pejorative’ when it could just say ‘harmful’. And these big words are so random — like the writer went back and just threw in a bunch of unnecessary big terms to sound intelligent.

But that’s not really the issue. The issue is the actual content — the solutions. It’s SOOOO bad I’m sorry :/. I know books are not easy to write, but this stuff is full of ‘preaching to the choir’ material.

Things like: “don’t drink too much alcohol.” Um...yeah that’s a given.

“Pay attention to your partner.” Again, obviously.

“Make sure you notice your partner. Just don’t be critical or judgemental.”

“Don’t get angry at your partner. Instead, think about why you love them.”

I tried to finish but I just can’t. The thing that frustrates me is it claims to be in the spectrum of Cognitive Behavioral Health (CBT), but doesn’t actually include any CBT related material anywhere in the book. Saying “that just proves the partner is lazy. This will hurt their feelings” is not actually a solution — it’s a given. People having relationship issues are looking for real exercises that help identity the actual reason for why th

14 people found this helpful

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Loved it

Recommended to anyone not just couples with problems. I'll listen to it again. Great purchase!

8 people found this helpful

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A Audiobook to listen to many times over

Every Morning I listen to this audiobook while getting ready for work. I have been in couples therapy for 1.5 years with a man that is bipolar and has a personality disorder. This book has been perfect in getting my own self esteem back on track.
It teaches you how to stay present remembering that your partner is the one you love, no mater what. I do recommend this book to couples that spend time, energy, blaming, returning to past events letting go and seeing the big picture

4 people found this helpful

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Some parts are good, but expected better

I expected better for someone that worked so close to Marsha Lineham herself. In my opinion the exercises and examples were not very useful and the narrator made everything a million times worse. I would suggest listening to a sample before buying and figuring out if you will be able to tolerate Vanessa's reading where she ENUNCIATES every SENTENCE as if it were CRUCIAL. Every-single-sentence. Too much. Some advice was useful though, like how important validation is, and the "practice in your head how you are going to respond to conflict with validation before you actually do it in real life" and the "accept what you cannot change by changing its meaning". If you are an avid reader, you might not lose to much by buying it and maybe gain some, but if this is the only book you are going to read about couples, I suggest looking for another book.

3 people found this helpful

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Excellent tips BUT

Always a but, right?

One can implement all these VERY USEFUL TIPS to improve communication. BUT just as this book acknowledged, there is a sorrow that comes when change is not forthcoming. Marriage issues become pale in comparison to that sorrow. And if you do ensure you are not unreasonable on expectations and work to improve your own expectations, buckle down on disappointments and YET there is no change?

This book is an excellent resource for marital and general high conflict relationships but it is no solution to the reality you are always dealing with another human who may not put in the same level of effort to either see changes in each other, or change perspective to allow for a sense of peace.

I have “read” this book a few times over and each time the sorrow increased because the reality is I am not unreasonable in expectations for a man to get off his rear end and actively manage house and children. As this book acknowledged - if a husband does not want to do a task or feels he is being put upon in the expectation he participantes in house management (and kid practical raising) then the least he can do is acknowledge a wife’s exhaustion with being everyone’s everything without any help and find other ways to support like interacting with children, taking over homework duty and bedtime routines while she finishes the mundane household tasks. Like accepting that when he turns the key to his foot after an exhausting day the children he birthed still require supervision, and his wife is not a frigging superwoman with powers to keep running - even if she stays home full time (and frankly, even less likely to have energy if she has been home manageons house and kids all day alone)

I will keep seeking to manage my perspective on these gender socialized roles that still have women overburdened with the greater bulk of house and kid tasks, and books like these are very helpful reminders to attend to how we manage our emotions in the process of conflict over the nonsense that comes when two people claim they wish to partner on raising a family but the woman inevitably is shanked with the burden.

BUT let me not vent… read on. The book is helpful if you are at the beginning of conflict. It will remain, like any advice passed the due date of addressing conflict - “a wish one had done so and so” before that divorce

1 person found this helpful

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Good book but bad narrator

As previous reviews have noted, it is a bit hard to follow with the unnecessary notations. But a good book nonetheless.

1 person found this helpful

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great

great examples which will help with everyday conflicts. i believe i will listen to it again to get everything

1 person found this helpful

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practical new patterns<br />

tangible practices offered to break away from old patterns. listen through to get the full concepts.


1 person found this helpful

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Great Book with Exercises and Directions!

This was a great book based on research with practical applications you could practice in interactions.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Nicola
  • 01-14-18

An insightful approach

I enjoyed this book and found it insightful and useful. my only reservation and the reason it didn't get 5 stars is the fact that it doesn't make it really clear that if a couple are trying to find solutions to habitual conflict they should only ever this program if both are committed to the same outcome and both follow the program.

2 people found this helpful

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  • e.julieta.sp
  • 11-09-19

MY FAVOURITE BOOK ON AMAZON!!!!

I absolutely love this book. It is one of my absolute favourite books. It talks about conflict resolution and validation in a couple. I LOVE IT!! I will hear it again.