Couples argue about both trivial and important issues. In most homes that have frequent conflict, couples tend to treat their home as a business relationship without taking time to ensure that they communicate deeply with their partner to discover the best way to handle all the major aspects of their relationship.
Having relationship trouble? You are not alone. Below are some of the more common reasons why couples argue and how they can minimize conflicts in their relationship.
Work demands put pressure on most relationships. Most couples who succeed at work and at home, believe that their work is important but they also know that if they lose their jobs they could get another one in a short time. But a strained relationship will take much more effort to rebuild. Put a priority on your relationship. Family is the most important thing at the end of the day.
No one ever laid on their deathbed and wished they had spent more time at work.
Power and Authority
Often times, the bread winner in a relationship feels like they have a right to have more power in the relationship. Making this assumption adds to conflict. Relationships are teamwork. Just because one party doesn’t bring in the money doesn’t mean they are contributing just as much to the relationship. Respect your partner as an equal contributing member.
Keep in mind, power will constantly shift in a relationship. It is your job to fight to keep it as balanced as possible.
Couples argue about their finances because their perceptions about money are different. Our way of perceiving money is born with us. Some people are dominant savers while some are dominant spenders. When a spender marries a saver, they argue because they have not understood how to complement each other’s natural money views. Couples should unite and work out joint financial decisions to eliminate conflict.
Parenting decisions could cause disagreements when couples don’t sit down together regularly to discuss how to raise their children. The most experience we rely on is from how we we were raised. Good or bad. We bring those ideas to the relationship and fail to discuss it with our partner. Keep an open mind and try to come to an understanding with your partner.
It is common for couples argue about how to relate with their in-laws. Often couples get married and don’t realize they are marrying their partners family as well. The key here is to communicate with your partner about how you feel. Don’t let resentment build. If you have a problem with a family, discuss it with your partner, but don’t just complain. Work towards a solution and try to resolve all issues quickly with family members. Also, keep in mind that you will have to make sacrifices that you probably don’t want to.
Couples argue about sex because men and women have different needs and they respond to sex and romance in different ways. Women usually desire more romance, physical affection, companionship and relationship. Men don’t typically need romance as a precursor for sex. When the needs of either party are not understood or met, resentment will start to build.
For relationships to succeed, you have to come to a common ground. Communicate clearly with each other what you need to be happy. Don’t expect the other person to just know or figure out your hints. Say it clearly and try to give your partner what they need.
Scheduling and Priorities
One common mistake that happens in relationships is not appreciating that you are a team. That means there will be many times that your partner will want you to spend time with them in ways that will take away from your personal free time. Work events, hobbies, visiting your in-laws will not always be things you want to be apart of. Sacrifice for your partner and they sacrifice for you. That doesn’t mean that you use all of your partners free time selfishly. You need to remember that they may have plans of their own. Don’t monopolize all of their free time with things that you want. Couples need to sit down and negotiate to find a common ground.
Negative personal habits like poor hygiene, substance abuse, negative thinking, use of abusive language, etc.. can easily bring conflict into a relationship. Remember, what you do directly affects your partner. If you decide you don’t want to clean up behind yourself, that mean your partner has to. This will not go unnoticed. You will pay with an resentful partner.
On the other hand, if you are on the receiving side of the negative habit, remember that you are not flawless. Try not to dwell on your partners flaws too much. There is a good chance you do things that they don’t like either. Now it not the time to nag. Express how you feel and be patient. Nagging will only make things worse.
Couples argue over household responsibilities when their roles are not well defined. A mistake that many men often make is assuming that their significant other will automatically assume all household responsibilities. Never assume this. Couples should take time to discuss and fashion out their own perspectives for handling household responsibilities.
“Fight Fair: Winning At Conflict Without Losing at Love”, Tim & Joy Downs, 2010