Does it seem like you are always having the same argument with your partner? Many couples report this frustration.
Some example phrases in such arguments include: “You are such a mess,” “You are always late,” or, “You are so controlling.”
Other recurring argumentative topics for couples may relate to managing money, quality time together, and chores around the house.
So how can you stop this endless bickering? Here are some tips to break the argument cycle.
Consider What’s Behind the Argument
Often when we get upset, we don’t realize that our buttons are getting pushed, and we automatically react. When we don’t realize what’s triggering us, we can get caught up in the same argument over and over again.
To make things worse, your partner has their own triggers. When we aren’t aware of such triggers, arguments can quickly escalate and take on a life of their own.
You and your partner may realize after the fight is over that you are stuck in a negative pattern.
In my clinical experience, couples often say, “We argue about stupid things.” But those seemingly unimportant topics can represent something deeper that does matter.
Try to identify the deeper feelings that are getting activated. Figure out if you are reacting to fear, anxiety, criticism, low self-esteem or other feelings of vulnerability.
Sometimes when we’re afraid to feel vulnerable, we have a defensive reaction. Deep down we want to get closer, but instead we put up a wall, throwing accusations at our partner.
We all carry emotional baggage that can negatively affect our relationship. These emotions need to be processed so we can stop reacting and understand each other better.
How Do We Stop The Cycle?
When you are both feeling calm and ready, carve out time to talk about what the deeper emotions are that are getting triggered.
Talk to your partner about your sensitive buttons. Make sure you express your feelings and complaints without blaming or shaming your partner.
You are explaining your own triggers, not putting them on your partner. This way, both you and your partner can become more aware of the cycle as it’s happening.
Validating and empathizing with these deeper emotions also helps your partner feel they are being acknowledged and you care.
As you identify the deeper feelings you can begin to express them instead of reacting to things that don’t seem to make sense most of the time.
If you are arguing about things, it means you care about yourself and your partner. Otherwise, you would simply feel apathetic.
The more you can get in touch with your own feelings and issues, you can express these true feelings to your partner and react more productively.
Our counselors on the upper west side have seen these common couples arguments. Even if it seems like every conversation turns into an argument, we can help. Contact us today to get started.
The Relationship Suite
We are a group of skilled therapists specializing in couples/marriage counseling. Since Covid started we have been working with couples providing Online Couples Counseling in New York, New York City including Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Long Island, South Hampton, East Hampton, Montauk. Schedule a complimentary consultation by clicking HERE.
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