When we’re young, many of us have an idealized image of what our future relationships will be like. We hope and imagine meeting the perfect person, getting on with them flawlessly, having plenty of things in common, and never finding anything to annoy or irritate us, with no arguments or disputes of any kind.
However, after growing up and getting into their first romantic relationships, many people realize that these idealized images are little more than fairy tales. Every couple argues. It’s a natural part of the process of sharing so much of your life with another person; every now and then, you’re going to find things that you don’t agree on or just wake up on the wrong side of the bed and need a little ‘me time’.
But while every other will argue sometimes, it’s important to not let arguments and quarrels become a regular part of your romantic routine. Arguments can get worse as they start to occur more frequently, and it’s important to note that domestic violence isn’t just limited to physical assault; mental and emotional distress caused by one partner to another can be very damaging in the long-term too, so if you’re worried about excessive arguments with your partner, here are some key tips.
One of the first and most important tips to keep in mind when it comes to avoiding nasty arguments or defusing disputes before they turn bad is to try and make your communication as calm and clear as possible.
This means that you should avoid raising your voice, yelling, calling names, or resorting to any other bad habits you may have that don’t actually contribute to any kind of positive outcome or conclusion for you and your partner. Talking calmly and at a reasonable volume can instantly make a big difference.
Listen, Don’t Just Hear
People often argue because they have something they’re unhappy about and want their partner to know about it, but may feel that they aren’t being truly listened to. This is why it’s so important to actually listen to what your partner is saying, rather than simply hearing the words and failing to properly process them.
Too often, people in arguments focus purely on reacting to the last thing the other person said, trying to catch them out or prove them wrong, rather than actually listening, putting themselves in that person’s position, and truly understanding why they’re so upset. Working on your empathy can really help you resolve arguments much faster and help your relationship become healthier too.
Take a Breather
There are many different things you and your partner might argue about. It could be money, which is reportedly one of the most common subjects of dispute and disagreement among couples, or it could be something totally different like your sex life, work-life balance, family matters, etc.
Whatever it is you’re arguing about, don’t be afraid to call for a time out if you feel you need it. This can be a good strategy for many people, especially those who have trouble keeping their tempers under control. Taking a breather and letting yourself cool off could majorly help you avoid saying something you might regret.
Don’t look at an argument as a battle between you and your partner. Don’t see it as something with a winner and a loser or a simple opportunity for one or both of you to yell things at each other. See it as an opportunity. An argument is a sign that something is wrong, but it’s also a sign that at least one of you wants to fix it.
This ties into the previous point about listening; really take the time to focus on what has caused your argument and what you can do to make it better. Taking this constructive, positive approach to disputes can help you and your partner turn a negative experience into something positive that really benefits the pair of you as you move forward as a couple, rather than repeating the argument over and over.
As stated several times above, it’s important to acknowledge and accept that arguments are more or less inevitable. Some couples have more of them than others, and some can argue about the tiniest of matters while others only quarrel over serious subjects. But in any case, when arguments happen, having the right attitude and approach can help you negotiate them more carefully, reducing the risk of any emotional damage on either side and helping you and your partner build something stronger.