by: Ojialah Cook Most of us are either involved emotionally or seeking companionship! We crave love, but when we receive that love and times get tough, how do we treat it? How do we respect it? Crazy things happen in relationships and sometimes those circumstances lead to arguments. But every argument isn't bad! It takes certain skills to argue successfully and I've noticed some "No-Nos" when it comes to having a beautiful disagreement. Being a married "20 something", I can say it's not all rainbows and sunshine! But you know what, if the storm is handled correctly, you will definitely see the rainbows afterward! So with that said, here are the top ten mistakes I've noticed lovers make in quarrels (myself included y'all lol)
A lot of times we are already conjuring up a response while they are talking. We don't take the time to truly digest the reasoning and explanations that they're giving us. This leads us to make a faulty response because we don't have all the information we need to respond correctly and respectfully. We put more emphasis on getting our point across which leads to number two.
Whenever you focus more on having a point than respecting and loving your partner, you've lost! Priority is key when having a successful argument. That means, is my man/woman more important than me proving my point? Do I value their feelings more than I value being right? Seems easy right? Not in the moment. In the heat of the moment, we all just want to make the better argument! It becomes more about the debate than the love! It becomes more about the point than the person. Make sure you put your person first! Good priority says my person comes before my point.
This may be more of a female trait but many times we don't take what our partner says for face value. We make "hidden meanings" behind what they say instead of just taking exactly what is said and letting that be truth. We try to find the intention behind what is said! Big mistake! Take what they're saying for what it is. Let them explain their feelings and emotions the best way they know how. Don't try to come up with what they "meant". Respect what they said.
HUGE MISTAKE! Your relationship will always be full of individuality. Be aware of the make up of your person. The way they were raised, their family background. By doing so, you may see some keen differences in the way they respond to certain situations. Don't put unrealistic expectations on your partner. It's highly unrealistic to expect your partner to think like you do. And because they don't think like you do, they can't respond like you do. Many men are not as emotionally involved as women may like and many women are more emotionally then men would care to accept. That being said, accept differences and don't expect your partner to be you!
So many times, we don't want to hear the truth about ourselves. When something we've done wrong is brought up in an argument, we find a rebuttal by bringing up something our partner has done wrong instead of just owning up to our role in the issue. It's easier to point the finger than to pinch ourselves, of course, but when you refuse to accept the truth about yourself, the argument turns into a debate rather than a healthy argument. Don't be afraid to say, "babe you're right I have done that or babe I'm sorry I've made you feel that way." Ownership and responsibility go a long way in relationships as a whole as well as in arguments. Don't let pride overtake you and blind you from what's really important, love
Now I know that most of you all want to handle things right then and there, but that's not always the ideal way to handle an argument. Sometimes, either you or your partner, need time to step away and analyze the situation before responding to it. By forcing an immediate response, you or your partner may lash out in a disrespectful way because the anger has not been processed effectively. Give it time and give it space. If waiting to talk is requested, honor that request because there's always a reason it's being requested. Give them that space to calm down. You'd rather them respond to you in love than out of anger right?
We've all done it! Maybe still do it. We want our partner to feel how angry he/she has made us. We want them to feel how bad they've hurt us! So what do we do? We pull out the low blows! We get aggressive in our approach and we say things that we KNOW FOR A FACT will hurt our person! We know we can't take it back but guess what, at least you feel how I felt and now I feel better because you're pissed off as much as I was. But that feeling of being appeased only lasts for about a few seconds because at that point your partner has, more than likely, found something else to piss you off with. Let's avoid the aggressive approach to arguing. Avoid the phrases, the words, the circumstances that will have your partner pissed and searching for a way to hurt you. Need examples? Ladies, avoid calling your man "the B word"! How degrading to his manhood! How do you expect him to be a man if you speak such negativity over him. And men, avoid calling your ladies "needy". Yes we are emotional beings but don't you feel loved when you feel needed. Don't you feel like more a man when you can make a few decisions and flip a few coins for your lady! Embrace the positive sides! Avoid the aggression! No low blows.
On the flip side of the aggressive approach it's probably not wise to be passive-aggressive either! In arguments, this is the "nice nasty" approach usually laced with sarcasm and duck lips (for ladies). Oh, throw in a couple of rolled eyes and and after your partner has left, a few ignored texts and you have a recipe for disaster. It's never a completely easy thing to argue in a calm manner, especially when the circumstance seems unfixable at the moment (is that a word? Unfixable? It is now). But know this sweet people, being immature and resistant to the needs of your partner is never the answer. Hanging up on your partner and then sending them to voicemail, not gonna cut it okay? It's time out for those cliff hanger "we need to talk" texts and then leaving your partner to just assume things and expect the worse. Let's give our partners what they need emotionally, even in an argument! Let's look at the definition of passive aggressive behavior: "of or denoting a type of behavior or personality characterized by indirect resistance to the demands of others and an avoidance of direct confrontation, as in procrastinating, pouting, or misplacing important materials." Does that sound like anything that you'd do when you want to argue successfully? When you want to get through an argument without it getting physical? Nope. Let's avoid doing this. No matter how strong the urge to be petty is, let's choose to be mature and not passive aggressive.
In the heat of the moment, it's easy to get "lost in the sauce" and when that happens, usually your voice starts raising and you start clapping and pointing, throwing things, etcetera etcetera! Understand this though, usually when you are yelling like that, your partner is not receiving a word you say. More than likely, they feel disrespected and as a result, have shut down. At that point, they've stopped listening (number one) and they've already started trying to find a way to disrespect you! Avoid this by thinking before you speak. Not exactly about what you say (even though that counts too), but about how you say it! Think about it, how would you interpret someone yelling at you? Even if it is the truth! Would you hear it? Probably not! Try to keep the tone down! It really does matter!
Jumping to conclusions is one of the quickest ways to escalate your argument! Assumptions are almost like death traps on relationships! As I stated earlier, because you and your partner are completely different, you can't place certain expectations on them! And sometimes we do this indirectly by jumping to conclusions! We carry a "know it all attitude" and think we have our partner all figured out? But what if you're wrong? What if you've come to a conclusion that is incorrect and backed those feelings with "vibes" and "pit feelings" that you feel are valid. You've taken away your partner's voice! You've taken away your partner's expression! Give your partner a chance to validate your suspicions before you go off the deep end with your finger pointing and accusations! Don't jump in to quickly dear! It's okay to voice your concerns, but when you hold assumptions as truth before they are proven to be true, you're in dangerous territory!
I'm pretty sure there are plenty of stop lights in arguments that we should take heed to, but this is just from my experience! Have some more to add? Hit the comment section!!