The 3 Upside of Arguments
Ask any couple how much they enjoy the moments when they attempt to come to a consensus about an important decision or hash out a disagreement and most will confess nothing about the situation appeals to them. A few might enjoy the debate. Even allowing for the juice provided by confrontation, a far smaller percentage see the true benefits brought about by arguing with one another.
Part of the reason for the reticence to embrace arguing as healthy centers around most people’s introduction to the concept. Hearing raised voices and tears implants a bad taste in everyone’s mouth. In order to begin a discussion, one needs to reframe the role of arguing. The emotionally charged nature of arguing must be boiled down to a spirited discussion. Once in place, couples can see great benefits within the context of arguing.
All Is Quiet
The concept of arguments being destructive because they are ideas expressed at a high volume never takes into account the slow erosion of a relationship to creeping silence. Silence suffocates openness and trust. Couples lose sight of what is important. Some even stop sharing the simplest preference for fear of triggering a disagreement. Arguments reveal things clearer than even reasonable discussions.
Causes Say More
The topics couples fight about say far more about the state of their relationship than even the way they grapple. Taking care to consider the topics may give insight moving forward to the true state of the relationship. Let’s look at some things of which to remain aware.
- Repetitive: Having the same fight over and over means underlying issues are not being resolved.
- Petty: Resorting to minor things might demonstrate a lack trust to go deeper.
- Deflection: Using the fight to bring up satellite topics usually points to someone hiding something.
It can be easy, especially in the midst of the argument itself, to focus on the specific topic as the source of the disagreement. Only following the fight can one take a wider view like an emergency room doctor assessing a patient’s heart risks after they stop the bleeding.
Rules of Engagement
How a couple fights shows the feelings closest to the heart. A free for all brawl hews closest to a person’s true feelings even if they are unable to fully express them. Someone lining up logical points to support a viewpoint gives rise to an underlying respect for their partner. These are stylistic extremes of arguing. Most people lie somewhere in the middle. Keeping few guidelines in mind will allow couples to come out the other side of a disagreement whole.
Maintain Respect: Devolving into name calling or rudeness never values one’s partner. In the heat of the moment, one should remember love is the basis of a relationship and not causing the other to feel small.
Stay With It: Couples who care about one another will stay engaged throughout the fight. Mutually agreed upon cool off periods might be instituted to prevent harm from coming to each other. Those times are different than people bailing on the argument.
Take A Breath and Listen: Everyone is hardwired with an imperative to be correct and heard. Anyone letting the drive overwhelm their natural compassion for their partner will find themselves winning a battle, but losing the other’s heart.
Arguments always prove tricky given the amount of subtext hidden under every one of them. Taking time to let the issues out, exploring them fully and then coming back together as a unit are all signs of a healthy relationship. Empathy for one’s partner needs to guide how each behaves. Otherwise, an argument is only a powder keg and not an opportunity to grow.