It turns out fighting is actually important for a healthy marriage. Not only does it strengthen your relationship with your partner, Science Daily says a good fight might also be good for your physical health. When one or both couples suppresses their anger, it often causes an emotional and physical strain. Expressing those feelings and coming to a resolution of the conflict is healthier all around. Here are some tips for health fighting.
Don’t fight in front of the kids.
If your disagreements get heated, keep it away from the kids. Mommy and Daddy yelling, crying or using loud voices is very confusing and upsetting for them. Vow to each other to keep things amicable until the kids are at school, grandma’s house or bed.
Address it right away.
It could start with something small like where to go to dinner, but by the time the meal is served it’s snowballed into everything the other person has ever done to annoy you. Gently address what is bugging you as soon as it is appropriate. A simple, “Honey, it really stresses me out when you expect me to come up with a plan every time. Can we figure out a better way of doing it?” opens the door to a good discussion and avoids festering feelings from holding it in.
Look at as discussing an issue, not fighting.
Sometimes you’re going to disagree. All couples argue from time to time. Think of it is a healthy discussion instead of a fight. There’s no way to come to an understanding without both sides airing all of their questions and concerns.
Be curious, not defensive.
Instead of demanding answers, ask and listen for the responses. Ponder why your partner thinks a certain way and what they perceive as the pros and cons of going with that choice. Share your thoughts in a calm, quiet manner and answer their questions. Curiosity tends to lead to understanding.
Discussions are okay to have in front of the kids.
If you are fighting in a way that is disrespectful or unhealthy keep it far from your kids. However, it is good to model health communication skills for your children. It’s important for them to see people don’t always get along and learn ways to successfully handle conflict.
Researchers are even debating the old saying, “Never go to bed angry.” Sometimes a good night of sleep makes a difference in how an issues is viewed. Focus on the issue at hand and not the person and you’ll have a healthy marriage ripe with good communication.