Bickering doesn’t have to be a standard part of coupledom. With a little awareness and some effort on both of your parts, you can put a stop to some of your common arguments. You will always have disagreements from time to time, but they don’t have to turn into emotional arguments.
Start by paying attention to how your arguments start. Are there a few regular issues that cause them? Do they tend to always happen under the same sort of circumstances? Before you can find a solution, search for the cause of the problem.
We fight about: Who does what around the house
Solution: Make a plan and stick to it. In this area in particular, you can save yourself a lot of time and aggravation by just making a plan together. Talk it through and make a chore plan that you can both agree on. Once you agree to it, stick with it. If you both hate cleaning, considering hiring someone to do it every once in a while and split the cost. It isn’t as expensive as you might think. You might even find that one of your neighbor’s teenage kids will do it for very little money. Consider all of your options then just make a plan you can stick too. Dirty dishes and towels on the floor are just not worth creating strife in your relationship.
We fight about: Not trusting each other
Being honest and consistent can do a lot to build trust in your relationship. Whether the trust between you and your partner was broken before or one of you has been hurt in the space, trust is a serious issue and needs to be treated as such. Have a conversation and listen to each other’s needs. Talk about how often each of you think you should check in when out with friends or on trips. Establish boundaries and expectations. It is important to be fair and take each other’s feelings seriously. Even if you have a different perspective, you need to be respectful of your partner’s needs. Focus on making each other happy and don’t expect every emotion to be justified.
We fight about: Everything!
If you are constantly arguing, take a step back and think through some of your most recent fights. Think about your role in the disagreement and try to be as objective as possible. Determine what you could have done differently. It’s not your role to play a doormat but you have to be realistic about the fact that you can’t change anyone else’s behavior. You can (and should) be clear with your partner about your needs and expectations but that is all that you can do.
Open up communication and make a real effort to change your behavior. If you have had similar issues in past relationships, look for the common threads. Give it some time and get advice from friends to keep things objective. If things don’t improve, be honest with yourself and decide if you can really live with your partner’s behavior.
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