4 Ways To End Up Fight With Your Partner
By: Pinki Mon, 17 June 2019 1:41 PM
You have a small disagreement with your partner, and before you know it, it escalates into a big fight. Sound familiar? You then get dreadfully grumpy. You stick your head in the ground like an ostrich and ignore your partner. You think that you have the right to be grumpy or even angry. You’re in “war” mode now, and you want to win the battle. You dig a trench, jump into it, and arm yourself with weapons.
* Recognise There Are Two Problems: Your Emotions and The Situation
When you first get upset or angry with your significant other, there are almost always two problems: your emotions and the actual problem. For example, say you’re frustrated with your partner for not doing the dishes. You now have two problems to solve: the dishes need to be done and you need to no longer be upset with your partner for not doing them. In most other areas in life, we recognise that you need to prioritise your problems and deal with them separately. It only makes sense to do the same with your fights. Before you tell your loved one something along the lines of “For the love of crap, could you please do the dishes for once?!” you may want to make sure you’re not one of those irrational people that make productive discussions difficult. Of course, being frustrated and venting anger is all normal (though continually ruminating on your problems without doing anything can just make you angrier). Accepting that your emotions are a real thing that needs to be dealt with and distinct from the subject of your actual argument sets the stage for resolution.
* Deal With Your Emotions First
When it comes to anger management, everyone has their own way to chill out. If you find yourself on the verge of a fight with your loved one, take a moment to deal with your stress, and allow them to do the same. In most cases, it’s probably best for you to do so alone (though in some sensitive situations, simply taking a moment to breathe where you are can help, too). Do whatever brings your energy down. Go for a walk. Listen to loud music. Write an angry note and then destroy it.
This will work best if you let your partner know ahead of time how you best handle stress. Stomping off, muttering under your breath without a word is a quick way to hurt someone. Before you find yourself in a fight, know how your loved one deals with anger and make sure they know what you need. Even saying “I need to go for a walk. Let’s talk in a few minutes,” is more beneficial than “Whatever.”
Most importantly, once you’re done calming down, come back. As we mentioned earlier, when a fight erupts, you’re dealing with two problems. Calming down solves one problem and it’s easy to feel like everything is better. Sometimes it is (and we’ll talk about that in the next section), but if you’re having a persistent problem with your partner, it won’t disappear just because you rocked out to Bohemian Rhapsody for a bit.
* Deal With the Situation When You Come Back
Once you’ve calmed down, you can start approaching your problem rationally. For starters, you’re now in a better position to choose your battles. Fighting with your partner over not doing the dishes for the first time when he’s had a long day may not be worth it. On the other hand, if you’ve gone thirteen straight weeks without spending an evening together, a discussion is probably worth having.
When you come back to have a discussion with your loved one, take a collaborative approach. If you engage a problem as you vs. your partner, you create barriers that only make a happy relationship harder.
Sometimes the problems will simply be how you feel. “When you won’t put your smartphone down at dinner, it makes me feel neglected” is just as legitimate of a problem as arguments over household chores. The important thing is to express the issue as something that the two of you can work together to resolve.
Once the talk is done, be sure to take action. Your ability to communicate is important and helps with feeling more of a bond with your partner, but if nothing changes, you’ll be having the same conversations again in a week. Once the two of you have established what needs to change, follow the same tactics you would to form good habits. Remind yourself later about the things your partner wants to change. Don’t rely on memory alone.
* Make Up
Cuddling, watching a movie, or having good old-fashioned makeup sex are all positive ways to end an argument on a happy note (though if you skip the conflict resolution steps, makeup sex can actually be a destructive habit on the level of cocaine). Ideally, you’ll enjoy your significant other’s company and make each other happy. If the two of you have had a healthy discussion about your issues, take a moment to reward yourself with each other’s company.