posted at 9/9/2011 11:30 AM EDT
In Response to Re: Ultimatums
In Response to Re: Ultimatums : CHC-- Interesting. I've been wondering about an example that would fit your statements above. I admit I'm struggling with it. In thinking about it, what's the difference between an incentive and a power play? Isn't that subjective, and probably determined by the person receiving the demand? For example, the classic "Marry me, or I'm leaving you." This could be either an ultimatum or assertiveness, depending on how the person receiving it understands it. "Don't marry me and I leave you" -- sounds like an ultimatum "Marry me and I stay with you" -- sounds like there's an incentive. Does it all depend on how the person receiving the demand comprehends it?
Posted by cb156
An incentive is something that the other party wants.
A bad example (because there is an imbalance of power between a parent and a child), but the best I can think of at the moment.
If you do your homework after school, I WILL make brownies so you can have a treat when you are done. If you don't do your homework after school, I will be forced to cancel your playdate on Saturday morning.
In this example, there is a consequence to not doing what is wanted and a reward for doing what is wanted.
Do your homework after school or I'm throwing you out of the house.
In this example, the parent outlines a consquence that is final and has a long lasting impact upon the relationship.
So in thinking about this, I think the difference between assertiveness and ultimatum is the amount of force employed in the dialog.
I think that when a topic like marriage is brought up in a relationship that has long been defined by other terms, it's often brought up with a lot of force because it's bubbling up from a place where social niceties are set aside. The need to resolve the issue overpowers the fear of the outcome.