Iranians in Psychotherapy : Story of a Bottle of Water

by minadadvar

Yesterday I submitted an article outlining the factors that prevent us from benefiting from psychotherapy: "Becoming sane without going carzy".  I appreciate your comments.

Today I would like to elaborate on the "Blame" factor.  As I mentioned we have a tendency to balme others and circumstances for our sufferings. But I believe that we have the power to change our life by changing ourselves.

Perhaps the best way to clarify this point is to tell you the story of a couple who came to me for marriage counseling.  Mrs X bitterely complained about her husband's temper.  

"When he gets angry he explodes.  He screams, slams the doors, breaks things and calls me horrible names. I can not go on like this anymore." She said crying.  

Mr X calmly turned to me and said "Mina Khanoom I am not a violent man. I work very hard all day long.  When I come home I need some peace and quiet.  But my wife does not leave me alone.  She constantly criticizes me. She nags, complains and makes life a living hell. You see I am like a bottle of gasoline. As long as I am left alone nothing happens. But if someone puts a lit match to me, then of course I explode." 

I thought for a second and said "Mr X,I have a very important question for you that I would like you to think about.  How do you think things would have been different if you were a bottle of water ?"


more from minadadvar

good question

by Monda on

depending on if 1) Mr. X's knows what a bottle of water feels like.   2) he may have married her to treat him exactly as a bottle of gasoline.


Is it justified to blame someone if you are hurting?

by slow- learner (not verified) on

Blaming is the only way I know to deal with the hurt, pain that someone has done. I blame the person then I look at my situation, right there and then I feel relief and am soothing.


Dear Mina: Have you ever met

by AnonymousWoman (not verified) on

Dear Mina: Have you ever met an Iranian man who does not have temper? :-)


Bottle of Water

by minadadvar on

I appreciate your comments and questions.  As you might know I have just begun to submit my articles to But I will be more than happy to learn the system well enough to be able to interact with you on line. Furthermore, I will have a series of articles in which I will discuss all the issues facing couples in general and Iranian couple in particular. I appreciate your patience.


Jahanshah Javid


by Jahanshah Javid on

Thank you Mina. Your approach is a thoughtful and helpful tool in resolving conflict.


Dear "minadadvar",

by MiNeum71 on

if you want to read a great piece on this subject, go to
I’m Wrong, You’re Right, Alright?.

By the way: The majority of Iranian men are bullshit. Evidence?

Women abuse rates (2007, UN): 81% of Iranian wives have already faced
domestic violence (slapped, beaten, choked, attacked with Knives) in
the first year of marriage, 35% of them wanted to commit suicide, 9% of
them tried it but failed, 38% of the Iranian women have faced sexual
violence, 19,3% of pregnants were beaten.



A bottle of water

by Leili (not verified) on

has its own boiling point, too. It can burn and hurt, too. The proper answer may have been for this man to imagine that he was an empty bottle.

Too many couples put each other down and insult each other publicly, it's not only an Iranian thing.

What practical steps would you suggest to couples for giving each other space while staying loving and respectful to each other? Is such a thing even possible?

I am delighted to see a therapist who is willing to give time and attention to us Iranians on the site. Are you going to interact with us or just provide your blogs as a discussion point for others to participate? If I may make a suggestion, it might be better if you joined in yourself to direct the dialogue and to answer questions, too. Thank you for your thoughtful gift to us.