This module/week you have had the opportunity to watch the movie Fireproof in order to better understand the EMC equation (Identified Needs + Intentional Resourcing = Enlarging the Conversation). Through the lens of our course materials, explore the interpersonal communication concepts you identified in the movie. For example, did you find a degenerative communication spiral? What role did self- disclosure play? How was identity revealed? (Christine)
The movie Fireproof had a lot of interposal concept problems that we identified in our readings. This movie was about a married couple who struggled to communicate to one another. Caleb and Catherine had the mindset of their significant others to be able to read their minds, and know what they wanted, which created poor communication that led to problems in their marriage. In our readings, according to Stewart (2012, p. 282) having a partner who listens and is understanding is very important for relational satisfaction and need fulfillment. In Peterson it states, “Such frustration and isolation may be reason enough to sort out better intimacy-producing skills (Peterson, 2007, pg. 22). Caleb and Catherine lacked comfort and support to each other which resulted in the relationship to continue to fail. Their body language when they spoke to one another gave off feelings as if they were not interested in talking and every time led to an argument.
As Peterson (2007) stated, “poor communication blocks access to the deeper relationships we want and our friendships remain distant and impersonal” When Caleb was given the challenge by his father, he began to start verbal ways of communicating comfort and social support. But Catherine couldn’t see it. Due to the lack of communication they had she seen the good changes he was making was to make her upset. In reality Caleb was trying to show Catherine that he wasn’t going to just give up on their marriage. But Catherine couldn’t see past the anger, she couldn’t see that he was trying to become a better husband and get closer to her. Caleb didn’t know Catherine was feeling deception from her husband which caused her to act in such a way that she didn’t care.
Caleb wanted to give up because he didn’t feel any sign of Catherine willing to give him another chance, until the day he realized that god wasn’t answering his prayers and problems because he didn’t believe in him. “The events taking place around us and the meaning of other people’s behavior are often ambiguous, open to many different interpretations (Stewart, 2012, p. 213)”. Many times what Caleb was doing, Catherine would grasp it a different way. Caleb never stopped trying to communicate with her to win her back.
He constantly prayed and worked on his self to be better for her. One day when Catherine realized that Caleb had used his boat money to pay for her mothers’ items, It hit her that her husband wasn’t being selfish or that he was only looking out for himself but that he was there to help her and not push her away. Once Caleb became close to God and believed in him everything fell into place and Catherine soon learned that if he could change, so could she.
Peterson, J. C. (2007). Why don’t we listen better? Communicating and connecting in relationships. Stewart, J. (2012). Bridges not walls: A book about interpersonal communication. Ed.). Boston: (11th McGraw Hill.