7 tips for handling conflict in your relationship
Disagreements happen in all relationships, but what matters is how they are dealt with.
The way you deal with an issue with your partner can determine if your relationship is healthy or unhealthy.
With that being said, here are some tips to keep in mind that will help you handle your next argument in a healthy way.
1. Create a welcoming environment for open communication
In a healthy relationship, you and your partner can communicate openly about what is bothering you and what is going well in the relationship. It’s important to not only talk about the problems in the relationship, but also the positives so no one feels like they are doing everything wrong.
2. Maintain a calm and respectful demeanor during heated conversations
Don’t cross lines and start insulting your partner. Keep the focus of the dispute on the issue at hand and don’t bring personal jibes and put-downs into it. Also, if your partner consistently gets very heated, aggressive or starts cursing, then those are signs that your relationship may be abusive.
3. Get to the root of the problem
Sometimes when you argue with your partner it is because someone’s needs are not being met. If it seems like your partner is sweating the small stuff, take a moment to evaluate whether there is a larger issue at hand.
4. Watch out for arguments that stem from a need for control
If you feel like your partner may be trying to control what you do, then that is a BIG red flag. If your partner is mad that you text other people, doesn’t like you prioritizing school and responsibilities over them, pressures you to hook up with them, or tries to limit the time you spend with friends, then those are signs that your partner may be trying to control you.
5. Find some middle-ground
Finding a balance between what both partners want and are comfortable with is very important. If you both care about making the relationship work you will come to an agreement on things without feeling like you are making huge sacrifices for your relationship.
6. Agree to disagree and choose your battles
Sometimes we need to consider whether what we are fighting about is really worth arguing over. Is it just a matter of what to eat for dinner? Sharing the covers? What your next Netflix binge should be? If the problem is small, sometimes it’s best to just drop it. If you won’t be mad about it next week, then it’s probably not worth your energy.
7. Consider if the issue is resolvable or not
Sometimes we argue with our partner about something that is REALLY big and impacts our lives – like transferring schools, if you do or don’t want kids, and where to live when you graduate. If you feel like you will need to sacrifice your beliefs, morals, or dreams to make the relationship work, then you should think about whether this relationship is really worth staying in.
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