Bickering? Watch Dr. Dana on NBC on The Steve Harvey Show!

This coming Friday, December 6th, 2013, Dr. Dana is paying a visit to the Steve Harvey Show to offer some insight on a topic many couples have trouble with: bickering.

Bickering is a little different from “regular” arguments because it has more to do with general irritation than a specific topic. Bickering is when you’re arguing for no reason, when the conversation turns tense without any real provocation. By definition, bickering is arguing about petty or trivial things.

Couples can struggle with this bad habit (and poor communication) at any stage of their relationship, whether recently engaged or married for decades!

Steve Harvey and his wife, Marjorie Bridges.
Steve Harvey and his wife, Marjorie Bridges.

Now, the “textbook” definition of bickering may sound like it’s only when you’re fighting about things that aren’t important, but even when the topic is important – you can still be bickering. It’s all about how you argue.

It’s hard to describe, but it’s a feeling we all know – bickering happens when you’re already irritated, when the argument turns into personal attacks, when you can’t go a day without fighting about the same old topic.

There are plenty of reasons why this happens, but the two most prominent are overall lack of communication skills and simple selfishness.

Bickering can happen when two members of a couple don’t listen to each other. For the person speaking, it can feel like talking to a brick wall, and this only leads to irritation (and the bad habit of trying to drive a point home through constant repetition).

When opinions and feelings aren’t shared effectively, the same issues will arise time and time again without being solved. The problem is self-perpetuating – when you bicker, you don’t solve problems, and when the problems never get solved, the bickering becomes more and more frequent.

Talking is only one part of communicating. For couples to really understand one another, they need to listen.

The other major cause of bickering, selfishness, is as simple as focusing entirely on your own needs instead of your spouse’s (or the collective needs of the family). Bickering about who takes out the trash or what time to put the kids to bed is often an act of stubbornness – you fight because you want it to be your way.

Even if it doesn’t seem selfish at a glance, it is. Demanding that things be done a certain way, refusing to compromise, or only seeing a situation from your own point of view can all lead to unnecessary arguments.

On Friday, Dr. Dana will be sitting down with a few REAL LIVE couples to help them overcome their struggles with bickering and lack of effective communication. Be sure to watch for more in depth insight on how to communicate more effectively!

Find the channel and airtime for your local area here:


For more advice on how to strengthen your marriage, check out the StrongMarriageNow System today!
Dr. Dana Fillmore and Amy Barnhart, co-Founders,

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Tara Peterman 10 years ago

Dr. Dana AND Steve Harvey?! Oh man, I can't wait for this.

Rob 10 years ago

I think of this every time my wife and I can't stop bickering. Like, the only way this is going to stop is if I try to compromise and loosen up on my position being the only way.

Mary Kelly 10 years ago

You hit when you said it's like talking to a brick wall.. I'm going to try some of these techniques when I see my husband. Wish me luck!

Mike_Olsen_SMN 10 years ago

Mary Kelly, I wish you the best!

Mike_Olsen_SMN 10 years ago

Rob, It's great that you can compromise, but it should go both ways. There are some great articles on the blog on how to improve communication in a relationship.

Patrick Christison 10 years ago

I have changed so many times for my wife. She refuses to change because she says she is "normal'. What is that saying when you do not listen to the one who loves you the most???

Mike_Olsen_SMN 10 years ago

Patrick, I agree. If you really love someone you should listen to what that person has to say. In the article below, Dr. Dana has some great points on listening.

Patrick Christison 10 years ago

The story here is we have been together since 1986. We were both immature and jealous. In 2001, we divorced as she did not give counseling a chance. She and him took off without their kids and went to Florida for a few months to drink and have sex. This was her cousins husband!!!!! He finally realized the guilt was driving him crazy and told her to go back home. Of course, she was devastated over this as she thought this was a real man - lol. I admit, I had faults and flirted with other women, but hell when your unhappy and your wife does not get enough attention, then she will get it somewhere. That is so not true as people say this everyday. A person that wants constant attention will never get enough attention. They must realize deep inside the love that was shared became memories. Lesson learned to not run away from your problems - if it is your soulmate and true love, then you find a way through GOD to find that sign.