Last week, a friend of mine (SW) was speaking to a counselor. They were talking about defensiveness because this is one of the issues troubling SW’s marriage. The counselor told her that people only get defensive when they find some truth in what is being said to them. If the person believes what is said to be completely untrue, they will not react with defensive behavior. For instance, if someone called you a tree, you guffaw and move on, not wasting breath trying to talk the other person out of believing you are a tree, because you know with unassailable certainty that you are not a tree.