Many couples claim that they don’t argue; yet according to renowned UK marital therapist and author Andrew Marshall, arguing is always good! (Note.. not ALWAYS arguing though!) In fact, he says
“It is better to have a bad argument than none at all”
Why should we argue? Perhaps the simplest way to answer this is to quote Marshall on what happens when couples don’t argue:
“By not arguing and processing anger, partners will become withdrawn and less likely to communicate until the only strategy left is to detach.”
So, here are your Friday Fives Tips for busy Working Mums (and Dads) so that you can have a jolly good argument and clear the air!
- Before you try to resolve conflict, first of all, vent your anger, explain what you’re upset about and what frustrates you. This is about being emotionally honest and not bottling up your feelings.
- Really listen to your partner and ensure that you hear each other out, asking questions to check our comprehension. You need to LISTEN whilst they are talking, not be mentally rehearsing your comeback! And as an extension of this, seek to understand your partner’s viewpoint and be a detective looking for mitigating circumstances on their behalf.
- This one is going to feel a bit “ouch” for those of you who, like me, are not very good at admitting fault. Marshall says that rows are ALWAYS six of one and half a dozen of another. In other words, it is never entirely one person’s fault. So, what you must do during an argument, once you have vented and you have a better idea of your own failings, is to find something, however small, and apologise for it.
- If your argument is getting too heated, call time out. This means being apart in different rooms or going for a walk if necessary. Agree beforehand how much time you will spend apart and DO resume the argument once you have calmed down.
- DO complain but DON’T criticize. So instead of saying “You never spend time with me”criticism), say “I want us to spend more time together” (complaint). The way to differentiate is that complaints use “I”whilst criticisms use “you”
What do you think? Is it good to argue with your partner or not? Let me have your views below!