How Fighting Can Strengthen Your Relationship – if done right:

Conflict is something we rarely feel like addressing, but denying and suppressing those negative thoughts can lead to anger and resentment.

Fight Fair, and it can help your relationship.

And the best part is, relationship expert Toby Green assures us that when a healthy fight is over, there’s no damage done. Her’s how to have a “good” fight:

Fight Fair

Sex and relationship expert Dr Gabrielle Morrissey claims arguments and conflict are not bad in and of themselves. Everyone fights, but fighting can actually be good if you learn to fight fair.

Women tend to have better articulation skills than men, according to John Gray’s book Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus. Green urges women not to use a man’s inability to express himself in the moment to gain the upper hand.

Give him time to collect himself or let him get back to you later.

Fight Sober

Green’s first tip is the one that makes the most sense, but is also the hardest one to follow; don’t fight under the influence.

Alcohol can alter your priorities so that emotions are suppressed or exaggerated, so you’re in danger of under or overacting to what the other person is trying to communicate. Write it down, put it aside and pick it up again when you’re sober.

Fight Alone

Don’t bring in other people, friends or family members who agree with you.

Don’t mention exes, or mutual friends in supposedly perfect relationships Making a relationship fight into a numbers game will make the other person feel assaulted and immediately put them on the defensive.

The other person will be too busy trying to protect themselves from an onslaught of outsiders to focus on the point that you want to make – so it will be a wasted fight anyway.

Fight Honestly

Don’t beat around the bush when you bring up conflict. Don’t drag other arguments into this one or being up things that are untrue and /or irrelevant.

There’s no point making it personal by attacking them over things they can’t change, like their history or intelligence. The main issue will be lost or confused in a sea of wasted words, and the fight won’t benefit everyone because it won’t be an honest fight.

Fight Smart

Fight in a way where both parties can be heard. Try Green’s ‘In-Out-Change-Over’ method. In: state your problem in as few words as possible and follow up with a question about something else. E.G. “Don’t put me down in front of our friends. What movie do you want to watch?”

If the other person comes back on the defensive, then reiterate both the statement and the question.

This gives the other person the message, lets them know that it’s not the be-all-and-end-all, and allows them the dignity to reflect in their own time.

Fight Honestly (Again)

If you suspect that the other person is not being honest with you, then ask the question again: “How are you? How are you really?”

This will lessen conflict because you will clear the air as you go and avoid small issues snowballing into uncontrollable fights.

Fight respectfully, honestly and fairly, and your fights will strengthen your relationship instead of chipping away at it.

Who is the instigator of conflict in your life?

By BB Intern Yael Brender

Yael Brender

I am a freelance writer, dreamer and booklover. I write, rewrite, bang head against keyboard. Edit, re-edit, bang head against keyboard. I write for Bondi Beauty, Eat Drink Play, Warhol's Children and ZOS Magazine. Coffee is just as important as breathing, plus it makes me type faster! We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.


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