Frequently asked questions - How to argue better

1. Is this for you?

This course is for anyone who is worried about

  • how much they are arguing with their partner,
  • how they argue
  • how it might be effecting their children

It is not for anyone who is experiencing high levels of conflict or violence, or where domestic abuse is an issue.

If you are a woman worried about domestic abuse , you may find help and support through Women's Aid. This is the national domestic violence charity that helps an average of over 250,000 women and children every year. They work to end violence against women and children, and support over 500 domestic and sexual violence services across the country. Website:, Tel: 0808 2000 247, Email: If you are worried about the impact of domestic violence on your child as children are often more aware of problems than their parents realize, but don’t always understand what is happening and why. It can help if they have information that is more age appropriate. The Hideout is a website that has been created by Women’s Aid. It provides help, information and support for children and young people – whether they are currently living with violence, or have experienced violence in the past. includes lots of age specific information to explain what domestic violence is, how it affects children and where they can go for more help. Children can’t contact The Hideout directly by email or phone but the site has clear links to recommended national help lines such as NSPCC and Childline.

2. What is the course about?

Disagreements are a normal part of relationships, but when these become intense (heated and hostile), increase in frequency and are unresolved, then you may think it is time to do something about it.

This course is based on a tried and tested way of learning the skills that lead to better communication and ways of resolving your differences and disagreement so that your children benefit too.

3. What will I get out of doing this course?

It will help you:

  • Recognise how  to stop your arguments getting worse and sort out your issues
  • Make sure your arguing is not harmful to your children-constructive rather than destructive arguments

This programme aims to do this by showing you the three steps you will need.

  • STOP  -   ways to stop the argument getting worse –de-escalate the argument
  • TALK IT OUT - ways to help you listen to your partner, see it from each other’s point of view, and learn to speak for yourself
  • WORK IT OUT - ways to negotiate or compromise and find a solution

4. How long will this programme take?

Throughout this programme you will be introduced to 3 different families. Each family is dealing with a typical situation that often cuiases arguments. Each situation shows the skills that you might need to deal with arguments.

For each family you will see two short films. One shows what happens when the argument gets hostile and the other shows what happens when one of the parents uses the skills to change their behaviour, and argue better.

You will also be able to watch short clips of how the parents feel in both situations. There is an opportunity to see if you can identify what skills are being used and when.

The process of viewing each situation and learning about the skills used will take about 20 minutes for each family.

You do not have to do the whole course (watch all the clips) in one go. You can stop at any time and come back and start where you left off. There is also the option to view any of the videos again if you wish.

5. Can I dip in and out of the course ?

You do not have to do the whole course (watch all 3 families’ situations) in one go. You can stop at any time and come back and start where you left off the next time. There is also the option to refresh what you have learnt so far and view any of the family clips again if you wish.

The process of skills building is all about practicing and building up slowly. You may find it useful to watch the situations for one family first and then come back to build up the other skills.

Alternatively, you may want to finish the whole course before going back and revisiting sections. You can then build up gradually to practicing the skills yourself and using them with your partner.

Registering for the course allows you to dip in and out of the course in this way. Each time you come back you just need to enter your personal log in details (user name and password), that you set up when you registered; or your existing details if you are already registered at

6. Do I have to do the course in a certain order?

The course is designed to build up your skills to communicate better with your partner and resolve your arguments. It is based on a tried and tested way of learning these skills.

In each family clip you will see the skills of communication and conflict resolution being used. Each family is dealing with a typical situation that often happens when parents are stressed, working or not working, have money and family worries. Each situation builds up the level of skills used.

7. Do I have to pay for the course?

Currently this course is free to access, no fee is charged. All you have to do is complete the online registration process.

This course was developed by OnePlusOne as part of a funded activity by the Department for Education (DfE) under their ‘Improving outcomes for children, young people and families’ national prospectus. OnePlusOne is a charity organisation which strengthens relationships by creating resources that help families and frontline workers tackle relationship issues early.

The course is currently available on, an online support service, which is run by OnePlusOne.

8. Do I have to register for the course ? and What happens to my details?

You need to register to start the course and this means that each time you visit the site you can use your unique name and password to get back to where you were.

As part of the registration we will ask you some details about your situation to help us understand who is using the course and to make any changes to improve it. There will also be a couple of questions at the end, when you have finished the course.

Your details will be securely stored and only accessed by the research team at OnePlusOne. No personal details will be released and information will only be used to assess the value of the programme and to make changes where necessary.

 9. Do I have to do the course with my partner?

The course has been designed to work through by yourself or with your partner. Sometimes, when things are difficult between you it is easier for you to do it by yourself and gradually build up the skills to help you communicate with your partner. By changing even small things in your own behaviour you will notioce that your partner’s behaviour changes too.

It would be best if you were both able to work on this separately and at your own pace so you are learning the same skills and being shown the same insights. That way you can both use the skills to help resolve your arguments and make sure that your children get the best out of both of you.

10. How can I use the skills shown in the se clips in my own situation?

By completing these activities you will have learnt a set of skills to help you to communicate better and resolve your arguments. Try these out in your own situation.

To put these new skills into practice, set yourself some goals. This allows you to think about What’s Next: what you can do to STOP your arguments getting work, talk about the issues and find a solution. You can always come back to the course to practice these skills again and again.

11. Is there an exam/test I have to pass?

No you do not have to pass a test or exam to complete this course.


© OnePlusOne 2013