No marriage is complete without its share of arguments and fights. And, believe it or not, most of them are never resolved. Yes, you read that right. So what that means is that most couples are having the same fights over and over again. Whether that is a good thing or a bad thing is another unresolved question. But since people are having the same fights, there is obviously a pattern to it and similarities to these arguments – which means that with reliable counselling, you can predict the path of these arguments and take measures to prevent them before things go out of hand. So the next time you feel a fight coming on, try this systematic approach.
The first thing to do would be to be upfront about what is bothering you – because often the fight you are having is about something else entirely. So stop beating around the bush and get to the point. Talk about what is actually bothering you and do not make veiled references and allusions and expect your partner to get your point.
On a similar note, there is often a deeper issue behind every argument. It could be a sense of self, freedom, control, power tussles, lack of appreciation etc. The sooner you identify the real issue underlying an argument, the sooner you can work towards resolving it.
Do not let older disagreements and unfinished arguments piggyback on the current one. This could lead to a minor issue blowing up into a big fight. So focus on the issue at hand. Compartmentalize and talk about things related only to the current situation.
An approach of gentleness could work wonders. When you see a gridlock ahead, start off with agreements. Find something positive to reinforce, then come to the contentious issue. That way, you both feel the need to preserve the good feelings and will work to find ways to make things work.
Fight better, not less. That’s a tricky one. To fight better means making the way you fight better. Have discussions instead of arguments. Talk; and listen to the other person. Combined with the systematic approached explained above, you can turn ugly fights and arguments into healthy discussions that can actually strengthen your marriage.