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Essay Available:
4 pages/≈1100 words
2 Sources
Communications & Media
English (U.S.)
MS Word
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Particular Communication Practices That Escalated The Family Conflict (Essay Sample)


Purpose of Assignment
To look at family conflict as a process that escalates in intensity during four phrases.
Your paper should be typed, double-spaced, have 1-inch margins, and use 12 point font.
The four horseman of the apocalypse theory outlines conflict as a series of communication practices that increase in intensity over time. Please use this theory as a basis to investigate a family conflict. You want to discuss the particular communication practices that escalated the conflict. Were the family members able to resolve their differences after they have reached the stonewalling stage? If so what communication practices were employed in order to repair the relationship? If the conflict was not repaired, how do the conflicting parties relate to one another now?
Helpful Hint
The paper is designed to measure your understanding of a theory in the context of your own family. What I am looking for here are specific( communication) examples for all four stages and the result of the specific conflict.


Institutional Affiliation
Course Title
Family Conflict
The description of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse appears in the Book of Revelation, the last book in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. The Horsemen are a quartet of powerful entities personifying the four key concepts resulting in the Apocalypse: war, famine, pestilence and death. Gottman's (1994) model employs the metaphor to depict how the process of family conflict can predict divorce or the end of a relationship. The Dr. John Gottman's model sets off with conflict tactics, which are largely corrosive, and Gottman shows how terrible such behaviors can affect marital stability. The behaviors are shown to occur in a disintegrating sequence beginning with criticism as the first horseman of the apocalypse. These four phases include criticism, contempt, defensiveness and stonewalling. In a relationship, giving criticism is different from voicing a complaint (Lamanna, Riedmann and Stewart 294). While the last two stages shed light on specific issues, criticism and contempt can be described as an ad hominem attack of the other partner at the core. While making arguments is a normal process in most loving and lasting relationships, there are worse and better ways of managing family conflicts and alienating belligerence and using the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse should be avoided (Lamanna, Riedmann and Stewart 294). Constructive arguments not only work to resolve the issues that arise, but also create a strong bond between the couples. Using the four horseman of the apocalypse theory, this paper investigates how particular communication practices escalated the conflict and how the family members were able to resolve their differences after they reached the stonewalling phase.
The Connors' Family Conflict Case Study
Mr. and Mrs. Connor have been in marriage for ten years and have three children from the union. Two years ago, Mrs. Connor secured a new job as a saleslady in an insurance company. At first, the couple agreed that the new job would increase the family income and contribute to their welfare. Mr. Connor is a freelance programmer who creates web and mobile applications for clients seeking his services online. What began as a communication issue and misunderstanding nearly ended a ten-year marriage, were it not for the services of a counseling psychologist at their hometown. Mrs. Connor used to work late to meet the demands set by managers of reaching sales targets. The family has been struggling with financial issues and has been trying any alternative to cut down expenses in order to accommodate the basic needs such as food, house rent, education for their children and healthcare. As a result, Mrs. Connor has no house help to assist in the house chores and has to do these alone after work and on weekends. The husband is also engaged most times with enormous projects in his computer to beat deadlines set by his cl

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