Bagaimana Memupuk Hubungan Interpersonal Yang Erat
Prof. Emeritus Fred Piercy dari Virginia Tech University. Ahli terapi perkawinan dan keluarga.
Transkrip dalam Bahasa Inggris:
Anya (A): Hi Fred… so welcome to our podcast
Fred (F): I’m delighted to be here
A: thank you for joining me today on our Suara Sahabat Podcast. We are so honored to have you with us today it’s been long time since we last work together on something important, when was that
F: Right, I remember a few things: I remember our work at the University of Indonesia. I remember trips, one to Suralaya, a drug rehabilitation center. I remember working with you on a research you did related to teenage drug abusers and I remember your time coming to study at Purdue university, so we have some… And I remember your wedding…
A: yes, you did! You came to my wedding but we didn’t take pictures. So that’s the one that I missed, but you may be on the video.
F: I remember somebody throwing up doves into the sky but the doves kept coming back (laughing), it’s not supposed to be that way…
A: no it’s supposed to fly away
F: …that’s not a bad sign that was just something funny
A: yeah that’s probably meant that I would keep coming back to visit my parents, which is a good thing
A: so yeah that’s… we’ve been like, 30 years knowing each other and now you are… emeritus? Is that is that like.. um, retired?
F: Well I spent 45 years teaching marriage and family therapy and doing work and research in that area and then I retired They gave me a status called emeritus status and that just means that I get free parking when I go on campus and it’s a nice title, and I’ve done a little bit of work with the United Nations office on drugs and crime since then, but mostly I’m just enjoying retirement
A: yeah that’s that’s good to hear because I think with me it’s reversed like, I (was) “retired”, (and) now I’m trying to go back to all trying to be uh, you know, working again
F: That’s exciting.
A: Yes, that’ exciting. So today we are going to talk about, I think it’s a quite an important issues are that we can definitely use in our every day life, which is how to build a strong relationship. Especially in the world of current technology when relationships can be done with the click on a button on our smart phones or computers, so I think that’s why we need to talk about how to build stronger relationship in this modern time. So what why do you think it’s important that we pay attention to our relationship?
F: well I think everybody can relate to the fact that you’re happier when you’re in a relationship that’s satisfying. The people that study happiness find that as people grow older those that are in relationships – whether their friendships or whatever that are satisfying – they live longer. People that are identifying themselves as happier people usually can point to relationships that support them.
A: Yeah they did studies on happiness and wealth, something like that, right? And yeah it doesn’t quite the predict happiness but a lot of people said that when you’re old what counts is how you relate to others
F: Right, there’s (only) a few old people that wish they had gotten up earlier during their lives or worked harder, (but most of them) they usually wish that they had spent more time with their loved ones or family or your friends
A: yeah I heard like I think I read somewhere like no one’s on their death-bed wish to spend more time at the office or something.
F: And you mention online relationship… so what I asked people in my class how many friends they had on Facebook and one person said, “I don’t know… 1200 friends?” He was a football player and I said you know they’re not really your friends, right? They don’t like you that much (laughing)
A: yeah, I am not sure how people would develop friendship with like 1200 people…
F: yeah, it’s more just following people I guess… so I think a relationship is a lot more than clicking friend on Facebook
A: yes definitely, it’s more than that… So why what kind of things do we need to pay attention in relationship and how we try to take care of relationships?
F: before I have a list of things that I mentioned that at least I think are important and some of them are supported by research, but before I do, I hope that the people that are listening to this podcast can begin by thinking about their own relationships and ones that are good, times that they’ve had a really satisfying relationship. What are the characteristics of those relationships when a relationship is bad, with what seems to be going on that makes it unsatisfying and then I’ll tell you a few things that I think are important and people that are interested can compare that with their own experience. One of the things that I think is of a concept called reciprocity and that is that “the more you give the more you get”, this is a concept it in an all world religions there’s some sort of saying and beliefs about loving others (and) giving to others and that in fact would come back to you. The entire business schools are based on the premise the more you do for your customer, the more the customer will be loyal to you and I think it’s true for relationships as well. So there’s actually been studies on that, but let me give you a picture of me working with a couple. Often the couples that I worked in a couple therapy, one person would want the other person to change. (So) one of the things I said was that there’s As in the hole with (what) they have going for them that they absolutely can do something about is their own behavior. And one of the things they could do in their own behavior is do something that the other person is not expecting that’s positive. So let me give you an example: so one of the homework assignments I might give would be to pick a day during the week and try out an experiment to say or do something loving or caring to your partner even if they’re not doing it back to you and it’s called a love day. Or you could ask people to identify for themselves what are the things that make them feel loved and then asked the partner to keep track of actually doing that and then what usually happens is one of three things either of the person responds in kind and they’re more positive and loving toward you. Also if you act more caring and loving toward a friend or toward a spouse you actually start feeling more loving. Those are two of the things that could happen, and the third thing might be that to you know, you’ll learn something about the strength of your relationship but at any rate there’s something that’s awfully easy to do. Think of what are the things that I could do or say to a person and then see how they respond, see if they respond in kind.
A: so basically like we have to start it, right? Don’t expect someone’s going to give us something if we don’t do it first. It’s better to do something for others first…
F: well,one way of thinking is that you’re getting off of dead center. If the relationship gets stuck because nobody does or anything caring or loving for the other you can just get into a rut. How you get a relationship out of a rut is being proactive – in saying kinder, some kind things and are doing something that your partner doesn’t expect or your friend, somebody had a roommate… I give this is an assignment by the way in class where (you) pick up person that you of would appreciate being closer to. It could be a friend, it could be a parent, it could be a boyfriend but it doesn’t really matter. (Just) Keep increasing number of positive things you do for that person of five times more than expected and see what happens. And usually, you know, people who had really lousy relationships with the roommate (for example), those relationships get better because it starts a cycle, a more positive cycle occurring between the two of you. That person starts seeing you a little bit different.
A: yeah because if you act positive to someone, it’s going to be very hard for that person to act negatively to you because that would just be weird…
F: And (even) if they didn’t act positively toward you, think of it this way: you’re at least getting a habit started that can only serve you well in the future. I think one of the things to think about is kind of figure out this thing that involves getting out of your comfort zone. Your comfort zone can be just basically ignoring people or going about your business every day, looks kind a like kind a like the next, but I think last year’s New Year’s resolution, was one of them is (that) I go to the gym in the morning and I work out and sometimes I don’t say anything to anybody, I just go and then I go home. And I thought I’m gonna start a conversation with somebody every day at least one conversation and you can’t imagine how many people I talk to at the gym now, because I got I got out of my comfort zone and I reached out and just even (talking about) the weather or you know asking somebody about what’s going on with them, that sorts of things.
A: yeah yeah… I remember that one of your advise when I’m, when I was about to go to Purdue and you were saying something about don’t wait, like you know, don’t wait… I’m sure one of the things that people would feel going in as an immigrant I’ll because I came to another country as a foreigner, it’s probably one of the things that I would face is feeling isolated because I am not sure who I’m going to hang out with or be friend with, but I remember you said that I need to reach out, don’t wait until someone want to say hi to me maybe I should be the one who say hi to someone
F: I think even though your Indonesian listeners may think Americans are all very outgoing, there’s a lot of shy people, and a lot of people for example who might be in a class with you, if they don’t know enough about Indonesia to even ask you a question so they’re embarrassed to ask you about yourself and so it’s really, I can I imagine telling you that, it’s been a long time… but (yes) they’ll be much more likely to, you know, connect with you if they see you reaching out as well.
A: yeah I mean when I was at Purdue I came in and I got an instant community because with all the other people that I knew from the university that came to Purdue to study, so that was like kind of like an instant community but I did implement your advice after I got married and moved to Detroit where both of (my husband and I), you know, neither one of us knew anyone out there and you know it was feeling of being isolated and not knowing anyone, and I remember I would just go downstairs to do laundry and there’s a couple other lpeople who live on top of us at the apartment. I would just say, oh I actually knew how to operate the washer in the dryer, so (I’d ask them) how do I turn this on, you know, and then we kind of know each other and kind of like at least say hi in the hallway and say how are you doing, how was your laundry going…
F: well I am not sure this is what you mean but I guess it was the Ben Franklin or some famous person said one of the best ways you can make a positive relationship is also to ask someone for help. People like to help, so even if you know how to use the washing machine asking for help it’s not a bad way of having somebody connect with you.
A: Yeah that’s what I do. The one thing that I didn’t really realize that I physically I look different right like everyone else I’m in the Midwest everyone actually are white.
F: they probably don’t know where you’re from either, so they might think you’re from Mexico or South America.
A: yes, and then people are asking where are you from and so, little by little I remember those kind of things that makes me not feel too isolated like I would have someone to talk to and learn how to to strike up a conversation.
F: Exactly. And put yourself in a position to get to know people. I’ve retired so I have more time on my hands so I’ve joined a book group or where we, my wife and I, are much more active and inviting people over and so it does it, again, gets you out of your comfort zone a little bit. But before I get away from the positive stuff so some people may be aware that there are some research, uh I’m trying to remember, uh it doesn’t matter, (but) the idea is that (for) a healthy relationships there’s five positive interactions for every one negative one. If you can get up to that kind of level five positives to one negative, oh it’s John Gottman’s research, then that’s a sign that supports a more positive relationship.
A: Is that the concept of a piggy bank kind of thing? You have five… um how does it work?
F: but he makes points (that) you would think that arguments would be the death of a relationship but he says a lot of average people argue but one thing that really sets people that are doing well again, is this: being more positive than they are negative. The piggy bank thing is that you’ve got a bank of goodwill and every time you put, use or say or do something positively you’ve added some money to that bank so that if you’re sick and feel really horrible and you’re kind of crabby one day, you still have money in the bank so people still are going to feel positive toward you because your relationship has something to back it up.
A: yeah so that’s the one thing that people need to think it’s to keep doing what makes the relationships feel good, like do a lot of good things because bad things going to happen in relationship like that piggy bank thing. That’s howI see it because you know there’s no relationship that’s free of challenges and hard times so if your piggy bank is empty or doesn’t have much on it…
F: that’s right. How do you build the goodwill that we get you through difficult times and that’s what you do now, that’s what you want to be active and doing. I also wanted to say that good relationships are two-way relationship so I knew that… there (are)… Um, have you ever been with somebody that’s all they do is talk and they never listen that they don’t seem like they’re interested in you at all, they’re just talking. You don’t feel very good in that relationship.
A: yeah I’ve met some people who are like that. We just sit there for half an hour listening to her or him talk…
F: well when I think about relationships that I feel good about it it’s people are interested in me but I take time and I’m interested in them and I don’t know if it’s 50-50 all the time but at least you feel valued when somebody’s listening to you. And I also wanted to mention that it’s not just what you say to somebody, (or) what they say to you but it’s your eye contact and body posture… oh I remember – I guess it was my son who was carrying on a conversation with me while he was on his cell phone and I said, could you put your cell phone down? I don’t feel very important to you when you’re looking at that too.
A: yeah my kids would do that sometimes and we were talking and they were texting on the phone. I remember I was like, “so why did I just said two seconds ago?” And they were like.. uh.. oh..
F: well what’s interesting is that some research is suggesting that some teenagers are more comfortable talking to somebody right next to them on their cell phone than they are talking in person and that maybe true, but maybe it’s also a signal that they probably need to put their cell phones away. I have a rule in my class is that when I’m speaking everybody closes their laptops, puts their cell phones away and we pay attention to people and I think that makes for a good relationship as well.
A: yeah I think that’s the one thing that I wonder if the younger generations are not as good on their relationship skills because they do their relationship more through all of his electric device rather than person to person like looking someone in the eyes or just being present with the someone face-to-face. I always wonder about that if they…
F: yeah I think that uh… this is one of the things I was going to talk about later but I’ll talk about it now and that is that technology is not good or bad, it’s both, so in terms of technology and it allows us to stay in touch with people that were not In the same city with or it allows us to give some positive messages to people we care about to connect with them when we’re not able to connect with them physically but I think that the down part is that if you’re putting all your effort into typing on the screen and not connecting with the person one on one, somethings lost in the process I think
A: yeah I think so too. I don’t know, like, I think when all you do your relationship is done through a device, I don’t think it’s the same like when you see that person in real life like face-to-face physically be in and close… in the same place with that person. I mean I just think that, you know, it’s not the same
F: it’s not the same and I suspect technology is going to get better and better and there’s going to be more opportunities to talk to people you care about and see them and interact in a direct way but I think if you’re only connection with someone it is by way of messenger I think you are losing something.
A: yeah because I’ve been reading all these research that says how more people feel lonely nowadays than it’s ever been like meanwhile, you know, you are allowed to connect with people easier, you know, now than it’s ever been. Like when I was younger I have a friend in Germany, you know, that we write letters and it takes us like two weeks to even get each other’s letter. Now if I want to talk to her right now I can just text her and she text me back.
F: yeah yeah and that’s, you know, you might not even have a contact with her otherwise so that’s good!
A: yeah, but I don’t know to me it feels like that keep the relationship going by meeting her in person is different. I don’t think like you can be as close to someone just from writing letters or just talking or chatting on the phone rather than just meet her. I don’t know if everyone feels that way because for me, I need to meet that person, because it just doesn’t feel the same, just talking or chatting…it’s different like when you’re with that person physically. There is something else that you can feel.
F: Or… have you ever walked into a restaurant you see five people, (and they are) all looking at their cell phones, not looking to one another… or a husband and wife? Oh yeah, a year or two ago that my wife and I went to Cancun and we went into uh, with what did that they call it, uh I don’t know, an intimate dinner on the beach. So each of us had a little areas where we had a dinner and we were served on the beach and I was looking around at this other couple and they weren’t even looking at each other, they were on their cell phones and so you your lose an opportunity to be with the person that’s right next to you.
A: Exactly, I mean, yeah I see that, actually I see that all the time… I mean sometimes it’s sad because Jason and I, we would go to an expensive restaurant to celebrate, I don’t know, birthdays or whatever right, and you would think that people would want to go to this restaurant, gonna spend a lot of money… And when they’re waiting for the waiter to come, and they’re both on their cell phones, you know, sitting across from each other and Jason and I would be like, wow, well I mean we’re going to spend, I don’t know, you stand there, touching, uh… I man being with your cellphone, not being with each other. So for us, our rules, if we go to restaurant we only bring one of our cell phone because in case, (of emergency) someone needs it (for emergency) or whatever, yeah, but you don’t touch it. We’re going to be in the restaurant, and look at each other and talk and yeah, but other people be on their (cell phones). I wonder if that affects relationship.
F: I bet there’s at least a few of people that are doing that because they’re not sure what to say to the people or the person that there with and maybe we should talk about that for a minute. I think being curious… there’s nothing… there’s no better compliment to somebody than for you to be curious about their life their life and what they enjoy what they don’t enjoy and so what was the best part of today… and so, when in doubt you don’t necessarily have to talk about yourself, (but instead) you can show some interest in the person you’re with.
A: yes that would be a conversation starter too, like to ask people about themselves.
F: let me mention it’s something else that I think is interesting. I find it fascinating actually, that you know people can take things negatively or they can take things positively. You can see the glass of water half full or half empty and I’ll give you an example of how that works in a marriage. I once gave this couple a homework assignment of saying I love you, because you know, they never hear that and they’d like to hear it. So that I remember the husband told the wife, oh no, I guess it was the wife not the husband, that she loved him and he said what are you getting at, what do you want and (she says) I love you and (he says) what have you done?. So it is possible that anything positive to (be) seen negatively and (it’s) a challenge I think for us individually, is to… if our partner or if our friend isn’t behaving in a kind way or something, this is a challenge I think. Sometimes what you can do is a picture of something bad happening in their life or you don’t really know, let’s say there’s a driver in a car and they rush past you, you can either get mad at that driver or you can picture (that) they’re trying to get to the hospital because their spouses have been injured. And you can work on ways to not… or what are some other way… if 100 people saw this person’s behavior what would be some of the positive statements be about that behavior and kind of challenge yourself to see a partner differently. So I’ll give you an example if sometimes husbands aren’t as talkative as wives. They’re not as able to share loving behaviors and but they, you know, when I see them out together in therapy, I usually say, it seems like you show your love in other ways, you show your love in terms of, you know, going to work and making a good living and what are some other ways that she needs to see that you are caring and have a conversation about that. And so I think of the whole idea of what you see may not all be all together what you see and oh that’s not a bad thing to think about.
A: yeah it’s probably something that you need to practice right, to see the best in others, like what you said earlier about someone who passed you on the road, let them go and…
F: and sometimes with a friend, you know, people are kind of the way they are so one of the challenges is what what you can’t change to figure out a way to except it… and for example a I have a dog you’ve never seen but her name is Gracie and if I expected Gracie to sing or or even to come sometimes when I call her you know if I if I expect too much of Gracie I’m just going to be disappointed. And I think that if that’s (the) way with some of our friends and some family members, yes it would be nicer if they showed that they cared more or if they acted in a particular way but change is one option, (and) acceptance is another, and both have their place I think.
A: Yeah yeah I remember I follow that therapist, what’s her name now, her name is completely um… oh Esther Perell. One of the things that she says is that expectations is the root of resentments. So sometimes if you expect too much of a person that you know that person is not able to do or at expect someone who doesn’t like to talk much to be talkative person and that’s just setting yourself up for failure, right.
F: yeah… somebody else’s written about it in terms of addictions. It’s not that like to drugs, but if you’re addicted to getting an As, you’re going to be miserable if you don’t. If you’re addicted to your friend asking you about your day or doing their part of the dishes… You can expect or hope for it and do all you can, but if you’re addicted to something happening when it doesn’t happen you’re miserable. So part of your misery comes from your own addiction to something happening versus allowing a variety of things to happen without getting upset about it.
A: So it’s that balance of giving to your relationships and excepting you know, stuff that you cannot change…
A: it’s kind of like an art right?
F: yeah you do want to be proactive and do all you can but part of what you can do is to kind of except some things about a partner or a friend or a family member that they’re probably not going to change. Gracie will never be a singing dog…
A: yeah yeah like that part of excepting someone for who they are that’s one thing that I think it can be very challenging in relationships. Especially if… when we talk about marriage, marriage is… it takes a long period of time. It’s not like you know 10 years, you live with someone, no one’s perfect and you will get into, you know, you will see their imperfections more closely as time goes by right, it would feel, you know… that’s what I think when people needs to think about, which one of the part that you, that annoys you, that, you know it’s just them, it’s not going to change…
F: and one thing that’s interesting is that for a romantic relationship for example, what initially really attracted you to somebody can also be something that irritate you later on, so you’re you’re looking for stability and you marry somebody who is stable and it is, you know it’s not very…
F: yeah yeah that you could see it. Why can’t you be more exciting? You know that so the fact that they’re stable and they don’t let things bother them can be a strength but it could also be identified as a weakness. And we’re all face with that,
Now I would’ve like to mention a couple other things because I know we’re going to run out of time quickly. I wrote a little book on arguments and what couples can do to do something different in their argument, and I’ll just tell you real quickly people don’t have hundreds of arguments. They usually have one argument 100 times, and in some ways they all look kind of the same and I often ask audiences to, OK, think about your next argument, I bet you can predict what your next argument sort of going to look like. Who’s going to do what and then what’s going to happen and then what else is going to happen then what’s going to happen and so I hope that the people are there listening to this might think about the road life in an argument the keeps coming up over and over again what I’ve done is I suggested couples (about) relationships: you’re a smart person, (and) if this is what you do day after day after day I bet there’s something you could do differently so that wouldn’t go full circle and so I guess in the book I identify like 100 different things people can do, taking a time out to or… figuring out a way to back away and not be quite so predictable because it’s just unfortunate that… hey here I am again in the middle of the argument… at some point I’m going to withdraw again and then I’m gonna cry and then he’s going to reach out to me and how could we make it even have a conversation with that other person about how we can make next argument different…
A: So do you think that uh, you know, to do that, do you think people have to have a self awareness of what’s going to happen or what’s been happening so far?
F: It doesn’t hurt and I think a lot of people have the kind of know, gee… the next sorry we always argue about such and such. And I usually do this and then she does this and then he does this and oh my goodness, and then we are so predictable and this is how will make up again… And so if it can be identified it can be played out differently, because again, you have control of your behavior in this process. You can do something different
A: yeah yeah so let’s talk about how do people usually do that?
F: so I remember this one couple kasih presented this in the audience and I asked them, …during when you’re really “on”, how do you stop this argument from happening? What do you do differently? The very few times that you’re able to take it a step (back) and there is a couple that were married 50 years and they said well you know… when we are certainly get mad at each other will just stick at her tongues each other…and then we start laughing at each other, and we make it into a joke and that’s not good for everybody but for this couple it seem to work.
A: so you’ve got to find your own trick, right? How to stop that cycle from going on…
F: And maybe… In another case I remember of this woman (who) would always react to her husband the way she reacted to her father and she knew she did this but she didn’t know how to stop. So I wrote on a sheet of paper for her, (and told her to) pull this out (it says:) “George is my husband he’s not my father”, “George is my husband he’s not my father”… or or or I think of one woman said I love you and I’m not going to get mad at you. So you think I’m going to get mad but I’m not going to. And that broke up the cycle so it’s not it’s not something easy but if we’re that predictable surely there’s a way that we can learn to take a different step.
A: yeah yeah I think that’s you know one of the biggest challenge in relationship is when you become a pattern. I mean it seems like it’s just unavoidable, you are (becoming) a pattern
F: You can become the cartoon of yourself: “oh my goodness here we go again”. Here, let me mentioned one other thing because I think my list is pretty much filled now, and that’s the idea of every relationship has expectations and oh you know for example (to) people that aren’t married yet I’ll give them some questions to fill out, because people have expectations of their partner that they never tell their partner. They may not even be aware of it themselves until… Like for college kids I’ll say, OK, what’s your expectation of your partner? Is it OK for for him to gain 10 pounds? Is it OK for him to gain 20? You know, silly things. How much sports do you expect to watch on TV each week (laughing)… And even things like how do you want to raise our children? So we have expectations, it is kind of like a contract. We have a contract with our partner that we know about and you know, if you expect your partner to be with you after dinner for a certain amount of time or to do something or to act a certain way with others, that’s part of your contract and it would be helpful to be with my more aware of what your expectations what your contract is and talk about it. And they have a contract about you and what they’re expecting of you but if they never tell you what it is… So one of the things I try to do both in therapy and in some of the workshops with young people is to have them identify what is their contract of you know, religious education or of your own behaviors or resource school or going to college. You know, any number of things…
A: yeah… talking about those expectations or contracts. Do you think… uh, I’m going to talk about this with Ina later on, about modern marriage. It seems like nowadays people have more expectation of what they are going to… uh… what they want to get out of a marriage than my parents’ generations or my grandparents’ generations. Like, you know, people seems to have more expectations in marriage or in their spouse…
F: well so there’s even some theories on this. So like 100 or 150 years ago people got married because they needed to have someone to cook or to, or you know, if I or they needed children to help them at the farm. So love wasn’t part of it, so our expectations for companionship and love really are a little different than of what our parents or grandparents and great grandparents had…
A: yes…so do you think that’s what contributes to (the) rates of divorce, of you know, the modern marriage? Do you think all these “new expectations” on marriage, those are the one that contributes to…
F: Well, I think for some people it would be a real roadblock but then for others is negotiable and I think that’s where therapy comes in and that’s where direct conversations with your partner come in about what what you hope for what your hopes are for the future, what makes you happy, and what you would love to see happen in a relationship. I think direct conversations like that can make some of those things attainable and what is not attainable, at least you’ve talked about. So I don’t think it’s… yes people are are divorcing more but part of that has to do with they have the freedom, women have the ability to work in and can get out of a relationship where maybe they couldn’t get out of years and years ago.
A: so do you think it’s because women expect more?
A: because at the list if you think that saying that like 70% of all the words of proceedings are initiated by the wives (in the United States).
F: well… that’s a statistic I wasn’t aware of… so how about that? Yeah… (laugh)
A: (laugh) uh I think… where..what was the book that I was reading, it says 70% of the divorce proceeding in United States are initiated by the wives.
F: Well, you know, I can see that. What was interesting was that I spent years at Purdue and at Virginia Tech doing marital therapy and there was a prototypic couple and some of them work things out and some didn’t, but the prototypic couple usually had a wife that was much more articulate than the guy and the guy was much more into his head and helping him to express his love and caring and helping her to, you know, manage some of her, or get her to communicate in a way that he could hear her, (and) that was important, but yeah I would imagine that I think.. is it this way in Indonesia too that men are a little less in touch with her feelings than women?
A: I think so… but I think that’s what’s the difference between men and women, you know, how I think now.. I I don’t know if it’s because men are raise to be strong and so not really in touch with their emotions, while, you know, women are allowed to be more emotional and have more freedom to express them, you know, I’m not sure if that’s what caused (them)?
F: well since since the audience are are mostly Indonesians… do you see other issues that you would suggest or you have questions for me about that might be difference in culture that may be important to keep in mind>
A: Um, I think what probably would be challenging for the Indonesian couples, I would say (is) the part that you need to get out of your comfort zone. I think in Indonesia people are more (of) a community-based, you follow what the community rules and regulations kind of things, so to even want to be different than what is expected by your community… that’s probably more challenging
F: so the expectations of the family and of the church and all of that are somethings you need to keep in mind in terms of relationships.
A: yeah and perhaps have more conversations and discussion about what are expected of you as a couple or you know as a person versus how you can still can get out of your comfort zone without really defying all the rules and regulations…
F: exactly and uh…You know, what I say is because of me being in in my own culture and I I think your listeners are the experts on your own culture and your own experience, and so I think (that) both healthy and a happy relationship may look a little different in Indonesia them then it would for me so do you win can you respond to that? What do you think?
A: well I think it’s kind of hard for me to because I guess I’ve been living in the United States longer than when I live (in Indonesia), but you know what I can see maybe in the younger generations, they are becoming more and more like western couples because they know more and they watch TV more or read more about (western cultures) and incorporate those kind of like habits or attitudes. So I think the younger generations probably (are) becoming more and more similar with western couples, but I think that’s probably the one who lives in the big cities and you know, I grew up, I was born and raised in the big cities myself so I’m not, even I’m not quite sure how people who are in the more rural areas… you know how their relationships or what are (the things that are) expected of them…
F: Maybe my conversation today can become a conversation starter. Don’t take everything I say as truth, take it to something to consider and to talk about, because some of it may or may not fit with where people are living and with some of the expectations are.
A: yeah yeah but you know, most of the points, like being a good listener, you know, making (having) interest in other people, I think it’s universal thing to strengthen your relationship
F: we all want to be cared, we all want to show and receive love in this, you know, relates to friendship, it relates to family members and it also relates to marriages.
A: yeah and to see the best in others, be more positive, and to understand where other people’s coming from, I think it’s all universal kind of things that we all can apply it in our every day life.
F: oh good good
A: yeah so umm…what was that book again in case there are people who are, you know,like me, I love to read so whenever people say…oh…
F: This book is kind of old now, gee, I’m looking for it on my shelves just a second I’ll see if I can find it…
A: yeah the title I think I might have it…
F: oh I see (it): “Stop Marital Fights Before They Start” and that may or may not be accessible or not but it’s “Stop Marital Fights Before They Start” by Fred Piercy and Norman Lobsenz.
A: yeah that’s by Berkeley press, 1994.
F: yes uhuh…
A: so in case for the listeners who are interested in reading more about that issue and it’s always useful for couples to learn.
F: well Anya I can send you a copy and if there’s anything there that your listeners might be interested in, you can share it.
A: yeah that would be great
A: that would be so great yes so um maybe you know, next time we can touch more on that particular point so that people would ask. we will see what people would ask or more interested in because this is like more (of) general pointers. Yeah I think we have been touching quite a bit of the topics today and this has been a very interesting and useful conversation. I hope well, we all can learn something from what we are talking today and I’m so glad that you can fill in one of our episodes today and I surely hope to be able to talk to you again in the future…
F: I would I suspect it so thanks for inviting me and I wish you well and I wish your listeners well as well…
A: yes thanks again Fred and I hope you have a nice day
F: you too bye-bye