In business when a company misleads us about product performance or quality, or evades our questions, we feel cheated. Business transactions are not always as fair and honest as we hope; at home we expect better. Fair dealing is fundamental to business law. Playing fair is about agreeing on the rules, staying within the boundaries and meeting each other’s expectations.
Fair play in marriage is about keeping our vows and promises. It is also about not taking advantage of our partner’s faults or fears. Trash talk can work to throw opponents off their golf game, but pushing buttons, criticizing and demeaning each other at home, in public, or with friends is a game-losing strategy.
We know how it hurts to be blind-sided by criticism or the revelation of secrets in front of friends and family. Book 5 is about accepting and honoring each other’s emotional rules and boundaries. Marriage is not a zero sum game of winners and losers. If we don’t make marriage a win-win proposition, it will lose-lose because a win for only one side means game over. If we want to keep playing with our spouse, we both need to play fair. Because when we don’t play fair, we end up playing with ourselves.