Every couple fights and argues. It’s something that is normal for two people to disagree, no matter who they are!
However, fights with your partner tend to become more heated and passionate and often escalate to a point where one or both partners end up feeling hurt, frustrated and angry.
How can you learn to handle your fights better so your relationship doesn’t suffer?
Dear Dan and Jennifer,
“My girlfriend and I fight a lot. We both get really mad at each other and we say things we don’t mean. Is this normal? How can we learn to fight fair?”
–Jeff, North Carolina
Being An Adult
Even adults have the tendencies to revert back to their childish ways when getting into a heated argument. They may become critical, passive aggressive or even begin to act out and throw things.
Disagreements between two people aren’t what destroy a relationship. It’s the caliber of the fight.
Holding grudges and resentment, being passive aggressive or even hitting below the belt verbally and trying to hurt your partner are all things that have incredible consequences on the relationship and at that point, it’s not even really about the original disagreement in the first place.
The best way to curb a fight like this is to keep your actions in check. Be an adult about expressing your feelings. Don’t become withdrawn, don’t become critical and don’t lash out.
Talk to your partner about how you feel and even agree to disagree. Talking about your feelings in an adult way without being childish at all means you’re doing what you can do to keep the fight from escalating.
It’s Already Escalated. Now What?
It can be difficult to diffuse a fight or argument that has already escalated, but it’s not impossible! While you can’t control how your partner acts or reacts in an argument, you can control your actions and reactions and keep them in check.
If you find that the argument or fight has already reached a point where both of you are starting to act irrational or are really raising your voices, it’s time to take a time out. Take a few minutes to simmer down and get your emotions in check, as well as bring yourself back to the disagreement at hand.
Why You Need to Cool Down
Often what happens in a heated argument is that the original disagreement is lost when one or both partners start to become resentful, angry and frustrated. After you and your partner have both had some time to cool down, you can once again talk to each other about the real issue at hand.
Remember, it’s okay to agree to disagree! You and your partner don’t have to have the same viewpoints on every issue. If it’s something that really has an effect on your lives, work out a compromise that pleases both of you.
You can’t do this if your fight is escalating and both of you are being critical, raising your voices or even throwing things. Nothing gets solved that way! Be an adult, take a time out, and come back to the situation with a clear head.
While it’s natural and even healthy for people to disagree about things, it’s important not to become childish when you and your partner disagree, because you’ll affect the relationship in many more ways than that. Be open and honest with your partner in a non-judgmental way and keep a level head. If you both do that, you’ll solve arguments and disagreements in no time.