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Avoiding Divorce

John Gottman, Ph.D.

Our best predictor of divorce is contempt. Contempt is really sulfuric acid for love. It's any statement that you make from a higher plane than your partner. You're superior to your partner in some way. You're cleaner and smarter and more competent, a better parent. So contempt is really our single best predictor of divorce.

Martha Sigall

My favorite secret is never to go to bed mad. We decided when we first got married that we would never go to bed angry, we'd always make up somehow or other before we went to sleep. Now there were times when we went to bed very angry and we would just lie there and lie there. And pretty soon Sol would say, "I'm sorry I yelled", without saying " I'm sorry I was wrong", because he never admitted he was wrong.

Sol Sigall: I never was.

Martha Sigall: I'd say, I'm sorry too. Pretty soon we were kissing and hugging and we'd turn around and fall asleep.

Divorce Mythology



"You can both be
right and still find something to apologize for...."