FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS & ANSWERS:
Question: The MML Skill of “Showing Understanding” speaks of the listener having “Empathy” toward the person speaking? What does that mean?
Answer: Here’s an explanation from Dr. Bernard G. Guerney, Jr., founder of Relationship Enhancement (RE), the parent program of MML, in 1977:
The word empathy epitomizes what you are trying to do. By empathy we mean putting yourself inside the skin of another person and being able to share the world that he sees and feels. The highest level of empathic understanding is reached when you have put together what has been said and the manner in which it has been said that goes beyond the words used. You can articulate your partner’s views and feelings in a way that expresses them even more accurately and fully than he was able to do himself. You must then be able to communicate this deep level of understanding to your partner in a warm and accepting manner. We don’t mean that you have detected something that will come as a surprise to your partner, but rather you have focused his feelings in a clearer way than he has been able to do as he struggles to understand and express them himself.
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Question: Why have Mastering the Mysteries of Stepfamilies? Aren’t the MML skills enough?
Answer: Because stepfamily couples have multiple times more stress than most nuclear couples. The added stress means higher average divorce rates. Just as the MML skills have been proven effective by research, research has also delivered a blueprint to help more stepfamilies succeed, and even thrive. MMS combines the best of skills with the best of guidelines for a successful stepfamily.