Just a few days ago, I was scrolling through the online version of People Magazine dated December 2020. George Clooney was on the cover.
I am no fan of George Clooney. To me, he is just another mega-rich Hollywood actor who also plays the role of a part-time humanitarian. He is also the guy who is rich and loyal enough to give 14 of his best friends a suitcase of $1 million in cash.
However, what caught my eye was the People magazine interview with George Clooney in which he said this about his wife Amal Clooney,
I feel very lucky in so many ways to have met her. We haven’t ever had an argument.
What? They have never had an argument! He further went on to say that a lot of his friends’ relationships had been tested by the coronavirus lockdown but his relationship with Amal had been really easy.
Is it really possible for couples to never argue and live happily ever after? George Clooney has only been married for 6 years as of 2020 so his relationship still has to withstand the test of time, but I wanted to understand if it was possible for a couple to never argue and still have a great relationship.
After all, most people think that arguments are healthy and can provide proof that passion exists in the relationship. Can they be wrong?
Disagreements Versus Arguments
First, we have to understand what Clooney did not explicitly say. He specifically used the word “argument” but he did not elaborate on what he meant when he said that he never had any arguments with his wife. Here is why that could be important.
We all know that human beings are complex and no matter how much you are in love with another person, they can still have different opinions and views. This means that it is possible that George Clooney may disagree with his wife but he does not argue with her. There is a clear but subtle difference here.
This website clearly outlines the difference between the two words and how they can be used.
Disagreements are differences of opinion. The emotional attachments to the disagreement don’t get in the way of constructive information sharing.
Arguments also usually include a difference of opinion. The difference is that a high degree of emotion is attached to the opinion.
The key point here is about the scale of negative emotion attached to the difference of opinion between two people. When there is a high degree of emotionality running behind the difference of opinion, it can lead to an escalation and a full-blown argument with yelling and in some cases, physical violence.
I think this is what George Clooney failed to say in his interview. Of course, he would have disagreements with his wife Amal. However, those disagreements never got out of hand or turned into emotionally nasty arguments. This was the secret to his happy relationship.
What Works For George and Amal Clooney
An article in Psychology Today by Dr. Susan Heitler gives credence to the George Clooney approach of not having any arguments. The marriage advice that she gives is that
all married folks have conflicts, but conflict means there are differences that need to be resolved, not argued.
In fact, she goes on further to state that even “fair fighting” should not be encouraged and that the best way to resolve disagreements is through collaborative dialogue, mutual understanding, and solution building.
Although, none of us could ever know what goes on behind closed doors, I am sure that the Clooneys are mutually working together to keep their marriage happy.
In addition to stating that he never argued with his wife, George Clooney also expressed gratitude to his wife and paid her compliments in the People magazine interview. This is exactly what couples who never fight do — pay compliments to each other and openly express their gratitude.
Amal changes the temperature in every room she walks into….She succeeds in so many different ways and stands up for what she believes in. I feel lucky in so many ways to have met her. — George Clooney
It also helps that both George and Amal Clooney have a shared and vested interest in humanitarian work. Although George Clooney is older than his wife by 17 years, their shared interests may strengthen their bond. Together, they cofounded and are overseeing the Clooney Foundation for Justice which focuses on human rights abuses throughout the world.
When two partners have the same or similar interests, life is easier for the couple. Better yet, if they share a passion for the same interests, it can bond them for years. — Stephen J. Betchen
The Takeaway For Us
I don’t know if George and Amal Clooney’s relationship will last but if they continue to love each other by not having any arguments, I think we will see them both live happily ever after and they could very well serve as the ultimate role model of a good relationship.
What they have proved is that there are ways to have a happy relationship without fights and arguments.
In closing, here are the steps recommended by the experts in a Psychology Today article to keep arguments from destroying your relationships.
- Skip the fighting and calm down first whenever you have a disagreement. You can cool down in a few minutes and then resume the discussion. The way you communicate is very important.
- Polish up on your collaborative talking and listening skills. A collaborative discussion involves mutual understanding between both partners. Both partners should attempt to understand each other’s point of view and respect each other’s concerns.
- Finally, place the problem on the table and think of win-win solutions for both parties. The couple should be against the problem and not against each other.
Here’s to hoping that all differences can be set aside for a peaceful resolution and successful relationship.