“What I say always ends up in an argument or big fight, leaving me tired and worn out with my partner, I don’t know what to do!” We are always on the lookout for the perfect answer. Even though we spend countless hours searching for the answer to our problems online, listening to our friends’ advice, and reading relationship-help books, we still find ourselves in a constant arguments. So, how can I stop arguing so much with my partner? What are some tips to quickly de-escalate arguments?
To begin, we should point out that this is completely normal. At the end of our sessions together, couples often ask, “How can I stop fighting with my partner?”
Why Are You Getting Stuck in This Cycle?
First and foremost, it takes two to get stuck in this cycle. We cannot stress enough to couples that both partners are involved in the arguing. Blaming one person will not solve the problem or teach you new skills. So we usually start by helping the couple understand that conflict, arguing, and fighting involves both partners!
Let’s say it together…it takes both partners!
The next thing you need to understand is that this is not out of the ordinary at all. There is a lot of talk about how to stop fighting with your partner and improve your marriage communication when we see couples in our program. Our 9 tips to quickly de-escalate any argument with your partner should provide you with some new tools. We know exactly what you are thinking – is that even possible?
Contrary to popular belief, arguing with your partner can be helpful. However, there are some methods that are constructive — and others that can destroy your relationship. “All couples argue,” it is a fact! What is unhealthy is screaming and saying hurtful things that you can never take back.
The hard part is that arguments can quickly escalate into something you did not even see coming.
A conversation may start out well, but then you start arguing with each other about everything you’ve ever argued about, or you get stuck in a horrible loop over the semantics of something you said four and a half months ago. It can feel like you have no control over it and that there is no way out. But there is, and the key is to calm down the fight and de-escalate the argument.
The first thing you need to do is get a grip on the conversation, give yourself some breathing room, and focus on the real problem. The best thing you can do now is get back to the main point of what’s going on and figure out what the hidden issue is, and how to fix it. Here are some tips you can implement right away to calm down any argument.
Recognizing Hidden Issues
Your spouse has made plans without informing you, or has forgotten to put the toilet seat down, or has refused to offer to help with the dishes, and you’re fuming at the thought of it happening again. But, are you truly enraged about the dishes at this point? When emotions are triggered during relationship conflicts, it is critical to be able to identify and understand the underlying issues that are causing the conflict to escalate. Unexpressed expectations, needs, or feelings that, if not addressed, can cause significant damage to your marriage are examples of a hidden issue.
It is an obvious sign that a hidden issue is present in your relationship when a conflict erupts with an emotional intensity that does not correspond to the significance of the seemingly unimportant event that occurred during the conflict.
When we have emotional needs, there are feelings behind them that we must learn to communicate to our spouse in order to be validated and not be used as an attack on our spouse, as if they are not meeting our needs, but rather as a way to assist our spouse in meeting our needs.