Even if you’ve spent mornings in bed with your spouse, listened to their darkest secrets, and experienced their most fascinating scents, you are still very different. This implies that you perceive and live life differently and that you occasionally interpret events in a way that may not always agree with the other.
These dissimilarities occasionally can cause conflicts in the relationship. And while it is rarely fun to spend potential cuddle time working out a disagreement, these conflicts may occasionally be a crucial component in building a closer relationship between you and your partner. This article will discuss how to handle arguments in a relationship, what to avoid saying when you disagree, and how it could be beneficial for both of you to voice your opinions. So without further ado, let’s get started.
Table of contents:
- Different types of disputes in relationships
- Why do couples fight over unimportant issues?
- In a relationship, are arguments healthy?
- Arguments in a relationship: the healthy way
- Arguments in a relationship: the unhealthy way
- Benefits of conflict in a relationship
Different types of disputes in relationships
You may be using one of the four harmful argument patterns if you find yourself having disagreements all the time in relationships. These arguments are known as the “Four Horsemen,” according to relationship expert as well as therapist Dr. John Gottman, who has discovered that they frequently result in separation or divorce because they exacerbate conflict. The “Four Horsemen,” or Gottman’s four categories of arguers, are as follows:
When someone complains or criticises their partner, it can lead to frequent arguments since the offended partner feels hurt.
A defensive individual will attempt to defend oneself in an argument with a partner by asserting their correctness or by interrupting to state their case.
When spouses treat each other with contempt while having a disagreement, an argument between a husband and wife might become ongoing. When someone speaks with contempt, they are purposely hurting their partner and demonstrating a complete absence of respect for them.
Stonewalling, as the name might imply, entails building a wall when there is hostility. When arguing, a person who uses the stonewalling technique will withdraw or act impertinently toward their partner.
Avoiding the aforementioned behaviours is an excellent place to start if you want to learn how to handle conflicts in relationships.
Why do couples fight over unimportant issues?
Is fighting in a relationship normal? is a question that is frequently posed. The response is that having some disputes is rather common. There will occasionally be disagreements because no two individuals are exactly alike.
Arguments in relationships can get toxic if they are frequently about unimportant issues. This indicates that there is a deeper problem with your relationship because you are picking tiny conflicts. Some factors that can lead to arguments over small problems include:
- Having unreasonably high standards for one another.
- Intolerance of one another.
- Taking your frustrations out on your partner often.
- One partner is overburdening themselves with home duties.
- Getting angry and acting out because of stress at work or due to another situation.
Small disagreements frequently indicate that you are attempting to divert attention from another problem, for instance, the fact that one of you is overburdened or that you are just not connecting well. If this is the situation, some of the greatest relationship dispute advice will guide you to try to concentrate on the main problem rather than continue to argue over trivial things.
In a relationship, are arguments healthy?
So, are arguments typical in a relationship? The answer is yes, in a certain sense. However, arguing frequently in a relationship is unhealthy if it results in harm, like contempt as well as stonewalling. On the other side, productive arguments may develop closer relationships as well as establish trust between you and your partner.
To find a solution that improves the relationship and enables you and your spouse to stay on the same page, you may occasionally need to disagree. The way you argue affects your relationship more than how frequently you argue or even whether you argue at all.
According to research, arguments in relationships can improve marital satisfaction if partners compromise or employ other constructive conflict-resolution techniques. However, the same study has found that couples who avoid conflict or who favor one partner over the other and don’t take into account their needs will have less marital satisfaction.
According to what we know about relationship psychology, understanding what makes a good debating style is essential to learning how to handle conflicts in a relationship. Couples should recognise that differences may arise as well as it is achievable to learn how to deal with them positively rather than fearing arguments.
Arguments in a relationship: the healthy way
Conflict is common, but it can also highlight the aspects of your relationship that need improvement. Use these suggestions to assist in constructively resolving conflicts if your disagreement is over choices such as which movie to attend, whom to hang out as well as who should wash the dishes:
1. Set boundaries
Even in a heated dispute, everyone deserves to be respected. Tell your spouse to stop if they start cursing, calling you names, as well as making fun of you. If they don’t, leave as well inform them that you don’t want to argue further at this time.
2. Express your current emotions in clear, concise sentences
It’s tempting to insult your partner when they do something that offends you, such as, “You don’t even care about me!” Avoid the impulse to do this and instead concentrate on your current feelings by employing an “I statement.” For instance, you could say, “I feel like you don’t care about the time we spend together when you are behind schedule for the dates.” This form of self-expression promotes healthier emotional communication as well as more successful conflict resolution.
3. Identify the root of the problem
When one partner’s wants, as well as needs, aren’t being addressed, arguments frequently occur. Get as close as you can to the core of your argument. You or your partner is likely experiencing insecurity as well as feeling disrespected, and you are expressing these sentiments through disagreements over unrelated issues. To avoid endless conflict that masks the root of the problem, learn to communicate about the genuine issue.
4. Agree to disagree
It’s often preferable to just let a disagreement go if you, as well as your partner, can agree. It’s critical to concentrate on what matters because you can’t agree on everything. If you can’t agree to disagree on an issue because it’s too crucial to settle, it can indicate that you’re incompatible.
5. Avoid letting your feelings overwhelm you
You must learn to control your emotions during a disagreement if you want to understand how to handle arguments in a relationship. You’re unlikely to find a solution when you approach a disagreement in a warm emotional state because you’re angry as well as hurt. When you’re overcome with rage as well as pain, you’ll likely say something harsh that fuels the argument. Breathe deeply, ignore your feelings, as well as address the matter logically.
6. Be open to changing
You must acknowledge that you contributed in some way to any quarrel or disagreement since relationships require two individuals. You must be willing to change to address your part in the problem if you wish to end arguments in a relationship.
7. When possible, make compromises
To resolve conflicts and maintain a healthy relationship, compromise is essential, but it can be challenging to achieve. Find a compromise that satisfies both of you when making decisions, such as taking turns deciding what you’re going to eat for dinner.
8. Set reasonable expectations
The expectation that you, as well as your partner, would never disagree may have grown irrationally high, even though relationships without conflicts or arguments are abnormal. If so, you need to adjust your expectations to stop viewing every disagreement as a tragedy. Recognising that disagreement is normal and healthy will help you be more equipped to handle it.
9. Think of it all
You must emphasise your viewpoint if the topic of your disagreement alters how you feel about one another or compels you to compromise your convictions as well as values. If not, think about your partner’s point of view, their reasons for being offended, and whether a compromise is suitable. To give each other space to vent your feelings, try to contextualise your arguments.
Arguments in a relationship: the unhealthy way
Conflict is common, but you shouldn’t let it escalate into insults or attempts to diminish the other person’s self-worth. You can be the victim of abuse if you can’t express yourself without worrying about revenge. Find out more about recognising abuse’s symptoms and get assistance.
An abusive spouse will frequently try to influence as well as control you in a relationship. Abusive partners frequently provide illogical justifications for their attempts to exert power over and control, among them:
- You decide to do something else or spend time with others rather than them.
- They investigated your phone and found your texts or conversations to be inappropriate.
- They believe you to be dishonest as well as unreliable.
- You aren’t prepared for sex.
- When they need your attention, you are attempting to study or work.
Benefits of conflict in a relationship
When handled properly, conflict can help partners learn from one another and strengthen their bond. How? Read on.
Fighting is an indicator that both of you value the relationship
Fighting is a simple sign that your partner is still committed to your relationship. Rolling with the punches as well as steering clear of drama are two ways to live life without issues. Partners who are prepared to endure the awkward pressure of disagreements—especially those employing polite as well as transparent communication—remain committed to the success of their union.
It makes your bond stronger
Couples’ bonds can be strengthened when conflicts are resolved amicably and in an atmosphere that promotes open communication. It is consoling to know that arguments may be handled maturely as well as warmly without endangering the future of the relationship if both parties actively participate in finding a solution.
This eliminates the need for time and animosity by allowing partners to discuss disappointments as well as discontent openly. In the end, this can serve to fortify the relationship as well as increase the likelihood that it will endure.
You learn more information about your partner
You both discover new things about one another as a result of airing your complaints as well as providing your partner with details in ambiguous situations. It could be a communication technique, like lowering their voice when they are extremely hurt. It can be the realisation that some behaviours, like hugging before night, are essential to their happiness. Sometimes, all that is required is learning about their expectations as well as concerns for the relationship.
Fighting with someone you love may seem like the absolute last thing you would prefer to do, but choosing to resolve differences amicably with your partner may improve your bond over time. Fighting can occur without the danger of causing long-term relationship damage if an environment is maintained that promotes open communication, freedom from abuse, as well as healthy discussions.