People lack ability to solve problems with their spouses and when clashes occur, they fall deeper into confusion. Instead, the more you understand, the greater your faith will be. With faith, you will acquire results. Without faith, nothing will help you. If you do things with understanding, your life will be happy and it will make your partner happy too.
Param Pujya Dadashri has provided numerous ways to resolve conflicts in marriage and prevent couples fighting. Some excerpts of actual spiritual discourses with Him have been added below as they are and will help the reader avoid marital conflict.
Enclose quarrel within four walls
All the problems of the home should stay within the four walls of your home. This is how you should live together as a family. If you make just this much of a change, it is very good. There should be absolutely no quarrelling and marital conflict.
Keep calm when your spouse gets angry
When your spouse loses their temper, you should remain calm and alert. Only then, do you qualify for marriage. If they get angry and you get angry too, then you have not exercised caution in time. When they get upset, you should calm things down.
Focus on the Positive Traits
When we interact with others, it is natural to see both the negative and positive within them. However, we end up focusing on the negative traits rather than the positive ones. The solution is to make a list of the positive things in your spouse and read it when you face problems with them. You will be pleasantly surprised that such a small step will bring a positive change in your marriage.
Do not tolerate - Bring about a solution
Instead of tolerating, it is better to think about things in order to avoid marital conflict. Bring about a solution by thinking things through. It is wrong to tolerate. When there is too much tolerance, one bounces back like a loaded spring and when this happens, it creates chaos in the household. Tolerance is like a spring. One should not exert pressure on a spring, at any time. When you are dealing with other people, it is okay to an extent, but as far as people in your home are concerned, you should not exert pressure on the spring. The spring will bounce back. You should be tolerant to a certain extent.
If you think profoundly, you will then come to realize the causes behind all the problems. If you tolerate without thinking, the spring will bounce back. Therefore, it is necessary to think. It is when one does not think, that he has to tolerate. If you think, then you will understand where the mistakes lie. That will bring about a solution.
A key to unlock peace - Adjust to your spouse
In this world, no two personalities can ever match and this is a reason for couples fighting. After acquiring this understanding, there is only one solution, and that is, “Adjust everywhere”. What does “my family” mean? It should mean,” We do not have any conflicts.” You should know how to adjust within your family. God will not reside where there is conflict.
If both the husband and wife make a decision jointly that they want to adjust with each other, then it is possible for both to achieve their goals. A man has pain in his arm but he tells no one, instead he uses his good arm to massage the other one. In this way, if you are able to adjust, you will accomplish your work. Nothing will be achieved through conflicts. Even though you do not like conflicts, you still have them do you not? If the other partner is being adamant and keeps pulling, you should just let go and go to sleep. But, if you both keep pulling, neither of you will be able to sleep and your whole night will be ruined. You take so much care in your worldly transactions, your partnership, your business, and all related matters, so can you not exercise the same level of caution in matters of your lifetime partnership with your spouse?
Keep the intent to resolve conflicts with equanimity
Param Pujya Dadashri says, “All you have to do is to have the intent to resolve conflicts with that person. Make a decision to settle with equanimity without worrying whether you will be successful or not. Sooner or later, it will happen; if not today, then tomorrow or the day after; it may even take several years depending on how sticky your karmic account is. The relationships that you have with your wife, children and parents are very sticky and therefore they take longer to settle with equanimity. With those who are always close by or who are always with you, things will resolve slowly and gradually. Once you have decided that you want to settle all accounts with equanimity, it will happen, and there will come an end to it all. You have to maintain extreme awareness when dealing with those, with whom you have very sticky karmic accounts. No matter how small a snake is, you must proceed with caution, maintain awareness. If you become careless and inattentive, you will not be successful in resolving these matters. If the other person says something to you and you happen to retort, your external response is of no significance, because your inner intent now is that you want to settle matters with equanimity, and therefore abhorrence no longer exists.”
Asking for Forgiveness - A powerful weapon
When you find yourself in a marital conflict then do not let it affect your external interactions with your spouse. Instead, you should do pratikraman for them from within, because your current predicament is a result of your atikraman (causes, transgression of attachment or abhorrence through the mind, speech or actions) from your past life. What were the causes? The causes were acts of transgression against them in your previous life, the result of which you are now experiencing. Therefore if you do pratikraman for them, you will lighten the load. Keep doing pratikraman internally and keep asking for forgiveness from the Soul within your spouse.
Keep oneness with your spouse. If you quarrel with them, and if you don't keep oneness with them, then who else will you maintain oneness with? What does 'oneness' mean? It means never to have a discord. This is the one person with whom you should decide never to have a discord with. You need to keep that much oneness.
Even in your mind, you should not regard your spouse as a separate entity, nor should they feel separate from you. Even when their speech is inappropriate, you should treat them as an equal. As soon as you feel a rift arising between the two of you, take the first step and talk to your spouse as if nothing has happened. Just this little step will ensure that the oneness between the two of you is not broken.
Silence is not the solution
1) Whenever you have discord in the home, what remedy do you use? Do you keep a bottle of medicine?
Questioner: There is no medicine for differences of opinions between a husband and a wife.
Dadashri: Eh? What are you saying? You are saying that you sit silently in one room, while she remains silent in another room. Do you go to sleep not speaking to each other? Do you not apply medication when you get hurt? How do you expect the wound to heal if you do not apply the medication? Explain to me how a wound can heal without being treated with medicine. That wound will not heal by the morning. Similarly, your wife will sulk as she serves you a cup of tea the next morning. Even you will find that the wound has not healed from the previous night. Does this happen or not? All this talk is not beyond anyone’s experience. We are all the same! So why do you behave in a manner that does not let the wounds heal?
2) Questioner: Can things be resolved if we stop talking in order to bring the matter to close?
Dadashri: No, nothing will get resolved. If you meet that person, you should ask him how he is doing. But if he starts acting up a little and becomes loud and aggressive, you should maintain your calmness and solve the matter with equanimity. Sooner or later, you will have to deal with it. If you stop talking to him, does that mean things have been resolved? It’s just the opposite. It is because the problem has not been solved that people stop talking to each other. When people stop talking, it means there is a burden, a burden of not being able to resolve the problem. You should immediately say, “Tell me if I have made a mistake. I make a lot of mistakes. You are very educated and clever, therefore you don’t make too many mistakes, but I am less educated so I make a lot of mistakes!” You have to talk to him in this manner so that he will be happy and come around.
Attain Self Realization
The most important key to resolve marital conflicts is to attain Self Realization. With Self Realization, you will obtain a unique vision, which will help you solve your marital problems with right understanding.
1) As long as someone gets hurt in the slightest, on your account; its effect will fall upon you. So beware. If the other person keeps "dis-adjusting" and you keep "adjusting", then you will cross this worldly life. "Fault is of the sufferer" - if one is able to understand only this much, then not a single clash will remain in the home.
2) The wife and children have come under our shelter. How can we hurt those who have come under our shelter (and support)? We cannot hurt those who are dependent upon us even if they are at fault.
Questioner: How do you avoid daily quarrel between husband wife?
Dadashri: Why don't you make a decision not to quarrel for at least three days and see what happens. What is wrong with experimenting? Some people go on a fast for three days to improve their health, don't they? In the same way, try not to quarrel. Everyone at home should sit down together and decide, "I liked what Dada said, so from this moment on, we will not allow any quarrels to take place." Then just see what happens.