Defensiveness, Interdependence and Conflict

IDevice Icon Description

People do not typically have conflicts with others whom they don't need in some way.

Interdependence is complicated by what Deborah Tannen has termed the "paradox" of involvement and independence.

While all human beings have needs for involvement with others and feelings of acceptance, we also want to feel that we are in control of our destiny and that we can act autonomously.

iDevice icon Discussion

Interdependence between Teachers and Parents

Describe the interdependence that exists between teachers and parents.

What do parents need from teachers?

IDevice Icon Threats to Identity

When you disrespect someone's identify they focus on restoring their image and:

  • It puts them on the defensive;
  • It adds an issue to the conflict;
  • The new issue is often hidden or implicit;
  • Conflict escalates dramatically;
  • They focus on their own needs rather than mutual gain.

The next section will contrast defensive and supportive communication.

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