Conflict Haters Unite!
I hate conflict.
I don’t like getting into disagreements with my husband. I don’t like having a spat with a friend. As a parent, I hated the constant conflict resolution that was needed when my two kids didn’t get along. As a teacher, I sure didn’t enjoy being the one who had to break up the many tiffs between pubescent girls. And as a Grandma? Well, let’s just say that I sometimes choose to become an ostrich. You get the idea.
For me, when confronted with conflict, I tend to self-talk, fret, stew, worry and struggle with sleepless nights. But those ways of dealing with conflict don’t make a good relationship—or as a writer, a good story.
Conflict is uncomfortable, and most conflict just plain hurts. But as a fiction writer, that’s what keeps readers reading. We learn how others deal with conflict, how others try and fail and try again and finally succeed as we read about how they do it well.
Because I hate conflict, I turned to my first two non-fiction books that deal with preparing for marriage for advice, and I applied what my counselor-husband and I wrote to my fiction writing. We had great tips and guidelines and personality types and ways to solve difficult conflict, so I applied those ideas to my characters’ lives. We can all grow and learn how to deal with conflict through the stories we read as well as write. It’s a win-win.
Susan G Mathis is the author of The ReMarriage Adventure: Preparing for a Lifetime of Love & Happiness and Countdown for Couples: Preparing for the Adventure of Marriage with her husband, Dale. Visit www.SusanGMathis.com for more.