THEY ATTACK YOUR CHARACTER VS. COMPLAINING ABOUT SPECIFIC THINGS.
Fighting about sex? Money? In-laws? Our experts tell you what you’re really fighting about and how to get the issue solved once and for all so you don’t have to keep having the same arguments every three months.
“YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELF”
We all do things we’re not proud of but being shamed for them. Even if your partner has done something truly terrible, like cheated on you, publicly or privately shaming them may feel good in the moment, but it won’t help you move forward. “Rather than shaming them for a behavior that they are doing, take accountability and ownership for your part and your own feelings,” says Shirani M. Pathak, Ph.D., licensed psychotherapist and founder of the Center for Soulful Relationships. “When you approach it from this place, you take personal responsibility and the relationship has a chance to grow and evolve, rather than deteriorate with resentments.”
“WHY DIDN’T YOU ANSWER MY TEXT?”
Texting is great for communicating certain things: Appointment confirmations, lunch orders, shopping lists, and (obviously) funny memes. What it’s not great for? Communicating emotions. Couples often end up in blow-out fights about things said (or not said) in a text. “Texts are too easily misinterpreted,” says Laney Zukerman, Ph.D, psychology professor and author of Lessons for an Urban Goddess. She adds. “If you are upset, frustrated or truly angry about something, you will need to breathe and wait until you see your partner in person to express your upset. Impulsive texting is a big no no.”
“YES YOU DID SAY THAT”
I never said that! Yes you did! No I didn’t! Getting caught in a who-said-what loop is a surefire way to end up even angrier than when you started fighting. “This is an unproductive argument at a most fundamental level because it can never be resolved – that is unless they happened to videotape the argument, and even then might be iffy,” says Mark Sharp, Ph.D, psychologist and owner of the Aiki Relationship Institute in Oak Brook, Illinois.