Today Mrs. G. and I were the guest couple in my family life class. This is an annual exercise, and is always fun. This time I suggested a few topics that we should be sure to hit on, and divided up which of us would talk about which. I wrote the topics out on an index card, going back and forth between us. This worked very well. Our discussion flowed, and we stopped ourselves in time to let students ask questions for half the class time.
One of the questions was whether we argued, or whether we had been married so long that we had already worked out those problems. Of course we do argue, and said so. I noted, as I have argued in class before, that marriage does not really change your basic nature, but you can develop work-arounds for the points at which husband and wife clash. Mrs. G. then pointed out that the index card itself was one such work-around. For the last couple of years she has had so many interesting stories to tell that we ran out of Q & A time. Having the topics listed on the card was a way in which we (I) worked out how we (she) would talk to make our (mostly my, but also her) class work better.
I had not really thought about the index card as a work around, but she is entirely correct. And because we have spent years metacommunicating about how to work around communication glitches and conflicts, this technique worked without creating strife.