How to Fight Fair in Love

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While it seems like fighting in a relationship is a bad thing, not fighting can be even worse. Fighting is healthy in love under the right circumstances (i.e. when you are not constantly fighting and, when you do fight, fighting fair). Whether this is your first fight as a couple or, well, your twentieth, there are some simple rules to remember when you are fighting with the one you love.

 

Do not bring up every other past argument or issue the two of you have had in the past. You need to focus on what is going on now, not rehash old issues that (were hopefully) already dealt with. Past issues are not ammunition for your current argument.

 

Do not insult each other. Remember: deep down the two of you love each other. Hearing the one you love say something insulting about you (or you saying something insulting about the person you love) only makes things worse. Plus, it is impossible to “un-hear” such things. Think before you speak.

On that note, do not name call or use profanity. Be respectful of your significant other and expect the same from them. These childish tactics get you nowhere.

 

Under no circumstance is it appropriate to physically harm your significant other. Do not do this to them and do not overlook things if your partner does this to you.

 

Do not point fingers. While it may be clear to you that they were in the wrong, this will not help move things forward. This just makes your partner feel worse and keeps you and your argument right where you are. You are aiming for a discussion of the issue here; pointing fingers is just a tactic for stalling and placing blame…neither of which are fair nor are going to resolve your issue.

 

Do not threaten each other or give ultimatums.

 

Do not bring in other people and/or their opinions. This is between you and your significant other. The friend of your friend’s neighbor or the random person you met and spilled your life story to at the grocery store do not have a place in this, or any other, argument with your significant other.

 

Do not yell. When you yell, your words lose their power, as they are lost in the intensity of your yelling. People tend to miss the content of what you are saying and focus more on the fact you are yelling. Talk to your partner like they are a human being and you will find that your words are actually heard.

 

Do not judge, criticize, or laugh at your partner’s feelings, complaints, needs, etc. If they are taking the time to share these things with you, you can take the time to listen to their perspective. Hear them out and use what they say to ask questions that will lead you closer to a resolution. Remember, you have (hopefully) had a chance to air your complaints and what not as well.

 

Do not walk out –this is a coward’s move. Walking out is easy; staying to fight is hard but worth it if you are fighting for the right reasons/right person. Some people just need some space in an argument and that’s fine so long as you let your partner know that you will be back later. Walking out without telling them that is not acceptable. You would not appreciate it if the person you loved walked out on you and just left you wondering if they were ever coming back.

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