Adrian AshmanAdrian Ashman is currently Professor of Education and a former Head of School at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. He was trained in the 1970s as a psychologist at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia, and the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada and was elected as a Fellow of the American Psychological Association in 1991. He has operated private psychology practices in Canada and in Australia dealing primarily with adult clients with personal relationship and sexual performance difficulties.
Adrian has also worked as an educational psychologist and university researcher in the fields of special education and disability since the late-1970s and has consulted with a number of government departments including Education, Community Services and Health, and Employment, Vocational Education, Training and Industrial Relations. Professor Ashman is a trained mediator and has many years experience in conflict resolution.
Adrian is a keen recreational cyclist and walker, misses flying and sailing, and is very attached to his olive farm to which he and his partner retreat at every possible opportunity.
Host: What are the most important values my partner and I should share? Adrian Ashman: So, what are the most important values that a person on their part can share? There are a whole range of values and values are based upon our experiences generated as we have been growing up, being affected by our friends, being affected by our experiences. I suppose, when it comes to looking at a relationship we don t necessarily have to have the same values. Now, those values, I mean, what I have as individual has come from all the experiences that I have had and what my partner has, comes from all of the experiences that have occurred in that life and that s really important. So, the things that are important to us, so, let us put it this way I suppose, is that if our values are totally different, then it's going to be really difficult to be able to set up a situation where you are going to agree on a range of topics. Political views or mainly, think about someone who is a Staunch Republican and the other person is a Staunch Democrat. This is going to close issue and also the relationships that we have in religion. The other issues I suppose are who we are as a couple and I think there are probably, three really valuable questions to ask when you are looking at the values issues is, Who are we individually, but also as a couple? Where are we heading for as a couple? Now, that s important. Then probably, What are each of us going to contribute to that relationship? So, looking at the issue of values, means that we have look at who each of us are and what we can contribute to the relationship and also, where we need to be a little bit careful in our relationship. So, I suppose, if we are looking at how we come together in terms of the value structures that we both have to consider issues about what a family and who our family might be, when I have kids and values very much come into the raising of children. I think probably, the crucial thing is to be able to have opportunities to talk about the issues, to talk about the value systems that we have. Think of what's important to us and the extent to which we need to put our positions forward in terms of our values. Of course, the other one is as we go back to the original comment about respect and affection, now, it's respecting the other person s point of view. You don t have to agree with it, but it's important to understand what it is, what those positions are from both persons point of view and to be able to respect them. If you have don t have respect in a relationship, that s a real problem.