Just this once, lets begin this article imagining yourself already in a relationship. You’re with your girlfriend, and the only problem is you don’t know how to act when a fight breaks out.
Nervousness, fear of losing her, fear of loss of alpha male status… everything gets mixed up and gets out of control. Don’t worry, I’ve put together a short guide for what to do in an argument.
Yes, I must admit, this is a situation I sometimes face. After being in a relationship for 3 years, you can bet I’ve seen my share of plates flying through the air.
So here I am today to share with you what I have learned about arguments in relationships!
Sometimes you have to fight
The first thing to remember is this: If you want to sleep in the same bed tonight, you need to understand that conflict is a normal part of a relationship.
It can even be a good thing. It proves that you’re not the same person, that you’re both unique, and that you each have opinions to express.
If you can avoid resorting to low blows and cruel insults, nothing prevents you from clearly sharing your viewpoint. In fact, if you don’t do so, it can feel emasculating, like you’ve got no balls!
In my experience, the shouting matches can get pretty loud. It’s rough at the time, but it always ends up okay.
You always learn about each other, especially when you both share your true feelings. The first rule is not to flee from conflict, but to look it in the face.
Arguments can be solved!
What I’ve noticed is that there are three phases to any relationship quarrel. In the first, we show our teeth: a disagreement surfaces and we each stick to our own sides.
This is when the volume rises and your girlfriend starts to get emotional.
Then comes the dialogue. We speak more gently and begin to listen to each other. The last phase is agreement: taking each other’s arguments into account and reaching a common ground.
It’s during the second and third phases you need to turn on the charm.
Instead of focusing on who’s at fault, it’s more effective to really listen to each other, to show your understanding, and to try to arrive at a solution: “I understand your point of view. What can I do to make things better?”
This little phrase is magic!
It will calm her down – she’ll realize that you’re willing to make an effort. And that’s your bargaining chip
What you need to do is make it clear that she can’t expect so much from you if she isn’t willing to make some changes as well.
If you make some concessions, she will be more likely to, as well. In the end, everyone wins!
A word of warning: Don’t ever be the only one to give in. That gives her too much power. (And, to be honest, I’d give her the same advice – you have to meet in the middle)
The importance of listening
Seriously, there is nothing more annoying than someone who yells and yells and doesn’t let you get a word in edgewise.
So this is my personal technique. I let the lady talk, talk, talk… Once she has gotten it all out, I simply as her, “okay, am I allowed to say anything?”
More often than not, my girlfriend laughs when I react this way. She realizes that she’s gone a bit too far, but that I was listening the entire time.
What’s the result? She realizes that she won’t get anywhere by yelling, and we start to have a more rational conversation.
In short, my advice is to let your girlfriend have her say. Even if it stings, and even if she’s full of shit (in your opinion).
Then you can explain your perspective calmly, which will make your argument stronger.
Show that you care
I don’t know everything about your relationship, but I’m going to assume one thing: you love your girlfriend. If that’s the case, if she says something hurtful, it’s going to affect you.
The way to learn from a fight is to try to understand what’s going on at a deeper level. If my girlfriend mentions something I’ve done, I make sure I understand how she perceived my action (as disrespect, a personal attack, not paying her enough attention, etc.)
This way, I can make it clear to her that it wasn’t my goal to hurt her. Without apologizing for something I didn’t actually do, I ask forgiveness for the way it made her feel: “I’m sorry you took it that way.”
See what I did there? The result is, if the same thing happens again, she’s less likely to take offense.
The key is to show your girlfriend that you care about her feelings. It’s true, you don’t want to hurt her, but on the other hand, you can’t always give in to her demands. It’s a question of give and take.
Show her respect, and move on faster
This is my key point. If you overreact every time you hit a little bump, your relationship will never last. I used to act that way, and I didn’t stay too long with anyone.
Then I realized it making a big deal about minor issues was a waste of time. Moreover, it showed a lack of confidence on my part.
The best way to get over a fight is easy. Allow a little time for her to cool down – an hour, max.
Then, take her in your arms, without saying anything, and kiss her. 9 times out of 10 it ends in hot night.
Another option, after you’ve given her time to cool off, is to come back with a smile on your face. It’ll help her see how stupid the situation is and help her move on.
Since I started reacting that way, my fights never last too long, and always end well. So try, just once, and let me know how it goes. Well, better get back to the ball and chain before she starts to yell! ;)
Read Next: How To Deal With a Jealous Girlfriend