I hate fighting, I hate conflict, I hate being upset because of my partner, I hate all the bad feelings that come up for me while arguing. I hate hearing hurtful things my partner says. As a counselor, these are some of the common issues that a couple’s therapist often has to hear while counseling couples.
In a counseling session it is very common to hear that when one of the partners says, yes, I am conflict avoidant. Several people are, but not everyone. Some individuals actually like fighting. If you like fighting, you may want to stop reading, unless you wish to peer into the experience of people who have a tough time in high-conflict situations.
In fact, John and Julie Gottman say that how often one fights is not a determinant in the success of your marriage, but rather, it is how one fights. Respect is the defining variable. As long as couples respect each one, fighting in and of itself is not a threat to the marital relationship.
If you are afraid of conflict and strong negative emotions, here are some reasons stated by India’s eminent marriage counselor Shivani Misri Sadhoo who stresses why it is essential to be able to successfully engage your partner and manage strife.
Here are several reasons why fighting with your partner could be good for your relationship.
It Bolsters the Relationship by Increasing Trust
Constructive fighting that happens within boundaries, or rules, that lets for emotional expression while avoiding abuse, bolsters a relationship. Weathering the storm lets a couple see the clearing skies, and with calm waters approaching, a deeper understanding is visible on the horizon.
Coming through the other aspect of an argument strengthens feelings of trust in the process. Knowing that you can survive makes fighting less threatening. Because it is less threatening you tend to avoid delaying a confrontation and present your concerns earlier to your partner when they are less likely to cause an explosive reaction.
At times arguments erupt like an unforeseen squall on the ocean, blind-siding both the partners. Surviving these surprises enhances resiliency to confrontational situations.
You will Feel Better
Letting off steam and expressing your feelings frees tension, anxiety, and fear. When it happens, you feel “unburdened,” lighter,” “like a weight is off your shoulders.” Not only does this feel better, but it is also a healthier state when anxiety and stress, with accompanying harmful hormones, are dissipated (this does not mean venting or dumping toxic elements on your partner).
Keeping emotions bottled up every time often leads to rigidity of the mind, body and soul.
Your Partner will get to know about your Views, Feelings, and Thoughts
When you are able to completely express yourself, your partner will understand the depth of your feelings about the given subject. If you say, in a quiet and unobtrusive way, “I do not like it when you do this,” if your partner hears you, he/she will think you are mildly irritated about certain little things. If you are able to put some volume and intensity into the communication, they will get that this is essential to you.
Fighting has a way to bring out your worst tendencies. But it can also bring out your best attributes once you work through the tough stuff. In this process, you get to know the good, the bad, and the ugly of yourselves and your partners, and still love them.
Fighting tells you what is important for your partner, what they do not like, what they desire, where their limitations are, how flexible they are, what hurts or annoys them, and what they need to feel better or loved. Discovering these aspects breed a deeper intimacy and appreciation of the other.
Fighting could be a growth process in which your self-understanding, and understanding of your partner improves.
Also, many times the physical coziness that makes up post fighting cement intimacy. And to think most of you believe fighting is a bad thing to be avoided at all costs.
Your Partner is a Separate Entity
After you become comfortable in a relationship, it is easy to think your partner knows your mood, your needs, and your desires. Some people even think they can, or must, be able to read your minds. Luckily, fighting dashes these delusions in an instant.
When faced with someone who is absolutely upset, and telling you in no uncertain terms that they do not agree with your point of view, belief, or behavior, it becomes quite obvious that they are their own person. Sometimes it is difficult to recognize them at all as new sides of their personality emerge. It could be a scary sight.
Enhances your Character
You are able to increase your patience, care, and love by focusing on what is valuable – that you care for this person and wish them to be happy (without losing sight of your own needs).
Fighting is just like forging steel. Initially, there is no strength or flexibility in the unrefined product. As it is constantly heated, folded, and re-formed – like a well-carved sword– a beautiful piece of art is forged that can sustain the shocks and strains of heavy combat without breaking.
It is Completely Human; you can Stop Try to be Perfect
Fighting showcases that you are human and not some perfect angelic or divine being, or that you have the perfect relationship, or that you are above everything. It displays that sometimes you are in a bad mood, stressed out, or simply plain tired.
It displays wherein your psyche lay unresolved issues, whether they be for control, stemming due to insecurity, power, from feeling helpless, or self-esteem, from not being appreciated or respected. Whatever your problems, you are guaranteed that they will come up in an intimate relationship – that is just how it works. It is hoped that it has been demonstrated that fighting is a useful function for healthy relationships. When done skillfully, a chance for a greater understanding and love for your partner is possible. Talking about it is easy. Doing is harder.
**However, every fight is not healthy for your relationship. You need to observe how frequently fights or arguments take place in your relationship and what are the patterns. If they are too frequent. Then it is a sign that tells you not to wait for any miracle. It is a time when you should seek professional help from a qualified marriage counselor or a couple’s therapist. ** Marriage Counselor Shivani Misri Sadhoo at Saarthi Counselling Services is there to guide and help you if you are experiencing too much of a fight or constraints in your relationship.
During the current challenging time, it’s common to experience anxiety, depression, sleeplessness, and relationship challenges at home. While you are under lockdown and maintaining social distancing norms to help the country to control the pandemic’s spread, your very own counsellor Shivani is now just a call and Skype video call away from you.
However, in this age of coronavirus, we hope to offer our therapeutic help. Change is difficult for all of us and changing the way you meet with your therapist is no exception. But try it before you disregard this option. This is a challenging moment in time, and fears and anxieties are running high.
You may find, telepsychology isn’t a second-rate option. Instead, it’s an effective and efficient upgrade to a valuable service!
Feel free to call Counselor Shivani Misri Sadhoo at +91-8860875040 for telephonic or video support and to book an online counselling session to address any relationship issues, emotional and psychological challenges.