How to Fight Fair in Relationships: 10 Ways to Deal with Disagreements and Avoid Fights
We all hate fights but the reality is that arguments are a part of any relationship. Fighting fair in relationships is a skill that needs to be learned. It’s not easy to do, but it’s worth it.
When you fight fair, you’re able to resolve disagreements in a healthy way and avoid damaging your relationship. In this article, we’ll discuss 10 ways to deal with disagreements and also things to avoid in fights. We’ll also provide some tips on how to fight fair!
10 Ways To Deal With Disagreements and Avoid Fights
1. Understand Your Triggers
What sets you off? What are the things that your partner does that make you want to fight? Once you know what your triggers are, you can try to avoid them or at least be prepared for them.
Some people’s triggers might be their partner coming home late from work without calling. Others might be when their partner leaves dirty dishes in the sink. For some, it may be as simple as an eye roll.
Triggers are different for everyone but once you know what yours are, it’ll be easier to deal with them and will help not let your emotions escalate.
If you’re not sure what your triggers are, try keeping a journal for a week and write down every time you get into an argument with your partner. After a week, look back at your journal and see if there are any patterns.
Once you know what your triggers are, it’s important to communicate them to your partner. This way, they can be aware of what sets you off and try to avoid those things.
2. Communicate Effectively
Communication is key in any relationship but it’s especially important when you’re trying to avoid fights. When you’re communicating with your partner, be clear and concise.
Avoid using “you” statements such as “you always leave your dirty dishes in the sink.” These types of statements will only make your partner defensive and more likely to fight with you.
Instead, use “I” statements such as “I feel overwhelmed when I come home to a sink full of dishes.” This type of statement will help your partner understand how you’re feeling and why you’re upset.
It’s also important to avoid using accusatory tones when you’re communicating with your partner.
You want to avoid coming across as if you’re attacking them. This will only make them more defensive and less likely to listen to what you have to say. When you’re communicating, try to use a calm and understanding tone. This will help your partner feel more open to hearing what you have to say.
Lastly, it’s important to really listen to what your partner has to say. This means not interrupting them and fully hearing them out. When you’re able to listen to your partner, it’ll be easier to understand their perspective and find a resolution.
Fighting fair in relationships is all about effective communication. If you’re able to communicate effectively with your partner, you’ll be able to avoid fights and resolve disagreements in a healthy way.
3. Don’t Stonewall
Stonewalling is when you shut down emotionally and refuse to communicate with your partner. This usually happens when someone feels overwhelmed or hopeless. When you stonewall, you’re not able to effectively communicate with your partner and this can lead to fights.
If you find yourself starting to stonewall, it’s important to take a step back and take some time to calm down. Once you’re feeling more level-headed, you can try to communicate with your partner again. If you’re still feeling overwhelmed, it might be a good idea to take a break from the conversation and come back to it later.
4. Be Aware Of How You Speak
The way you speak to your partner can either make a fight worse or help to resolve it. When you’re fighting, it’s important to avoid using hurtful language.
This includes name-calling, belittling, and making threats. This type of language will only escalate the fight and make it harder to resolve the disagreement.
Instead, try to use positive and affirming language. This includes statements such as “I’m here for you” or “I understand how you’re feeling.” This type of language will help to de-escalate the fight and make it easier to resolve the disagreement.
Also, be aware of your volume level. Yelling at your partner will only make the situation worse. If you find yourself getting angry, take a step back and lower your voice. This will help to calm the situation down and make it easier to communicate with your partner.
5. Set Boundaries
It’s important to set boundaries in relationships, especially when it comes to fighting. You need to be aware of what you’re comfortable with and what you’re not comfortable with. This way, you can avoid situations that might make a fight worse.
For example, if you have a short temper, it might be a good idea to avoid discussing hot-button topics when you’re feeling angry. You can bring up these topics at a later time when you’re both feeling more level-headed.
It’s also important to know your partner’s boundaries. If they need some space to calm down during a fight, Respect their wishes and give them the space they need. Trying to force them to talk when they’re not ready will only make the situation worse.
Be aware of your own boundaries and also be respectful of your partner’s boundaries. This will help to keep the peace in your relationship.
6. Be Aware Of Your Body Language
Your body language can either make a fight worse or help to resolve it. When you’re fighting, it’s important to avoid using threatening body language.
This includes standing over your partner, waving your arms, or getting in their personal space. This type of body language will only escalate the fight and make it harder to resolve the disagreement.
Instead, try to use calming body language. This includes standing side-by-side or sitting across from your partner. This type of body language will help to de-escalate the fight and make it easier to resolve the disagreement.
Also, be aware of your facial expressions. Avoid making angry or aggressive faces as this will only make the situation worse. Sometime’s you can have certain expressions and not even realize that you are doing it.
If you find yourself getting angry, take a step back, take a deep breath and try to relax your facial muscles. This will help to calm the situation down and make it easier to communicate with your partner.
7. Pick The Right Time
When dealing with a disagreement don’t do it when it is late and you are both tired or if there are other people around. This will only make the situation worse.
Try to pick a time when you are both relaxed and have the time to talk things through. This will help to ensure that the disagreement doesn’t escalate into a full-blown fight.
8. Don’t Bring Up The Past
When you’re fighting with your partner, it’s important to avoid bringing up the past. This includes statements such as “you always do this” or “you did the same thing last week.” This type of language will only make the situation worse and make it harder to resolve the disagreement.
Remember, what is done is done and there’s nothing that can change it. To constantly hold a partner’s past mistake over their head is unfair and not healthy for a relationship.
9. Don’t Invalidate Your Partner’s Feelings
Your partner’s feelings are valid, even if you don’t agree with them. Invalidating your partner’s feelings will only make the situation worse and make it harder to resolve the disagreement.
For example, statements such as “you’re overreacting” or “you’re being too sensitive” are not helpful and will only make your partner feel worse. Remember, just because you don’t understand how your partner could feel a certain way doesn’t mean that they don’t feel that way.
Instead, try to validate your partner’s feelings. This includes statements such as “I can see why you’re feeling this way” or “I understand how you’re feeling.” This type of language will help to de-escalate the fight and make it easier to resolve the disagreement.
10. Create A Post Fight Ritual
This can sometimes feel awkward and also sometimes humorous but it’s a very important factor in dealing with arguments.
Create some type of ritual or tradition that you do after each argument. Not for little minor disagreements that take 30 seconds but the big sit-down issues that can be difficult.
It can be anything from kissing each other and saying I love you to both getting a drink and sitting on the couch for 10 minutes. Just create something that signals the end of the argument and reinforces that the two of you are still in this together.
It helps both of you to know that this is not the first or last disagreement you will have, but that you will always get thru them and do your post fight ritual together.
To Sum It Up
You will have fights in your relationship, it’s impossible not to. But if you have the tools to handle those fights without them blowing up into a massive emotional mess, then you will be able to weather any storm that comes your way.