Winning arguments, as satisfying as it is, can undermine your partnership if its sole purpose is to win. Of course, all couples fight, but if it becomes frequent, it’s important to think about what lies behind them and approach the situation carefully.
While avoiding fights altogether is impossible, there are ways to reduce their frequency. Let’s look at different suggestions you can use to improve communication and avoid fights.
How To Stop Fighting In a Relationship: Early Stages
We all enjoy going on dates, holding hands, and seeing the world through rose-colored glasses. However, once the glasses crack and fights start occurring, most people become worried, especially if they believe it’s still too early for it to happen.
The truth is, there’s no such thing as too early in a relationship to start having heated discussions. On the contrary, research shows it’s healthy to make your feelings known (in a respectful, productive way) even if your partner disagrees or has a different opinion.
Fighting in the early stages of a relationship doesn’t mean your relationship is doomed. You’re just getting to know each other, so it’s normal for disagreements to spark. Here are some tactics to deploy in the game of love and war to prevent this from becoming a habit.
1. Establish boundaries
When you start seeing someone, your main priority is to make the best first impression possible. No one wants to tell all the embarrassing details to their crush or spend the first date discussing insecurities.
However, it’s crucial to establish mutual understanding regarding the state of your relationship. Establishing boundaries and managing each other’s expectations are crucial in the first stages of a relationship.
Couples tend to avoid sensitive subjects early on, as it’s easier to become fixated on the wonderful aspects of your new relationship. But, if you want a chance to avoid constant arguments in a relationship, it’s crucial that you communicate.
Discuss your actions, agree on the matter of committed relationships, and your long-term life goals as soon as possible. Unspoken pet peeves and matters we expect our partner to guess are the most frequent triggers of fights in the early stages of relationships.
2. Don’t be afraid to have healthy arguments
Healthy arguments are all about self-awareness and understanding — listening with an open mind. During these discussions, we’re frequently vulnerable as it’s necessary to be sincere about our pain, anxieties, and insecurities that may be at the root of frequent disagreements.
Conflicts do and will happen, but talking to your partner will be more beneficial than arguing. If you’re prone to becoming petty and spiteful during the constant arguing in a relationship, try to shape your message before speaking, i.e., think closely about what it is you want your partner to understand.
Instead of blaming the other person for everything that seems to trigger you, take responsibility for your needs and wants. The happiest relationships value the other person’s feelings and experiences as their own.
Furthermore, discussing issues with your partner as soon as possible is the best way to go. People who can confront issues sooner, and do it in a healthy way, frequently see their relationship becoming a long-term committed partnership.
Fighting in relationships — When to start worrying?
If your fights are more of a yelling match, it’s probably not a good indicator for the future. There are certain red flags indicating that your fights are becoming toxic for each other:
- critiquing or demeaning,
- making false accusations,
- cursing or using offensive language,
- taking charge of the conversation,
- emotional blackmail (relationship-ending threats),
- kicking or throwing objects,
- physical violence.
Noticing (some of) these doesn’t necessarily mean you need to end everything, but you’ll need to discuss it separately and set the boundaries of what you’re comfortable with. You can’t really change someone, but you can influence them to change their conduct.
It goes without saying that any kind of violence means you need to end the relationship. It’s not something you should put up with, and it’ll happen again as it’s a behavior pattern rather than a one-time accident.
How To Stop Fights In a Relationship: Long Term
Long-term couples fight too. There comes a time when every little thing our partner does triggers a fight, even if it’s something we don’t generally care about.
Whether it’s about washing dishes or money, living arrangements, kids, friends, and in-laws, too many arguments end up bruising even the most stable relationships. Here’s how to approach the situation in a constructive way and make the relationship a healthier one.
1. Talk it out
You could fall into the trap of holding your partner responsible for everything while you’re having a disagreement. Rather than doing it, consider your feelings instead of what they’ve done incorrectly and try to have a calm conversation about it.
If you’re still unsure how to stop fighting in a relationship, try not to treat your relationship as if it were a legal proceeding. Don’t increase tension by gathering proof of how they wronged you with an end goal of having them admit they’re wrong, were wrong, and will always be wrong.
Stay in the present and stick to the subject at hand rather than bringing up the past. Pay attention to the problem that’s bugging you right now and figure out how to ask for what you need without making the other person feel awful.
2. Accept responsibility
Put your thoughts on hold and give the other person a chance to speak. Asking questions and paying attention to the responses is a wise substitute for making assumptions.
Oftentimes when we listen, we’re more concerned with what we will say next than with what is being said. We’re not truly trying to understand our partners by listening to them.
However, facing constant arguing in a relationship we tend to become defensive and reluctant to admit our wrongdoings. Finding the strength to take responsibility is key to a healthy discussion and resolving the problem.
3. Show understanding
Hand in hand with responsibility goes understanding, as every discussion has two opposing viewpoints. Make an effort to look at the situation from your partner’s angle, even if you disagree.
Instead of questioning if your partner’s perspective is legitimate or true in an objective sense of the word, accept it as their experience and think about what they might like for us to change in our behavior.
4. Take a step back
Don’t always shoot to kill with your words, even if you’re always arguing in a relationship. Taking a breath allows you to consider why you want to say something hurtful. When we say cruel things, it’s usually because we’ve been hurt and want to get even.
We succumb to wanting the other person to experience pain because we have been injured so they may understand how it feels. To avoid it, as it’ll just make the situation worse, it’s wiser to take a step back and give ourselves the time to process our feelings in a calm environment.
5. Don’t forget the good times
You may not remember how much your relationship means to you when you’re angry. So, build up a reservoir of positive emotions in your relationship, including why you love one another.
Constant fighting in a relationship can cloud your judgment and make the enjoyable experiences you share forgotten. When the times get rough, draw inspiration and energy from the intimacy you share, random acts of generosity, and everything you’ve built together.
6. Consider therapy
Of course, professional assistance may be necessary if you are unable to stop fighting. While some of the aforementioned advice may be useful, putting it into practice when your relationship is mired in winning and losing arguments is difficult.
Couple therapists can assist you in having a different experience. They have training and experience in discussing all facets of relationships and can help you rebuild healthy communication in your relationship.
We reached the end of today’s insight into tactics that’ll keep you out of serious arguments with your significant other. Hopefully, you’ll successfully implement them into your relationship and improve the situation.
And remember, it takes two to tango. So, reach out to your partner and work your way to resolving the conflict!
Is arguing healthy?
Arguing is healthy as long as it’s done in a nontoxic way. Expressing our emotions in a relationship (even if it’s anger) can actually help you strengthen the bond.
Is it normal to fight in a relationship?
Fighting is normal in all relationships, be they new or long-term. Whether the fights are about everyday nuances or life decisions, they’re a part of communication in a relationship.
How to avoid arguments in a relationship?
If you want to avoid fights in a relationship, it’s crucial to keep communicating. Remaining open, understanding, and kind are also things to keep in mind if you want to avoid serious confrontations.