Okay, let’s admit this, relationship fights, or at the least, relationship disagreements, are inevitable. Every single person on this planet is unique in their own way. That means every single person has their own views, own opinions, and own ways of doing things. When two people develop a close relationship, teething problems are to be expected. After all, you can’t agree with each other all the time, right?
Once you get to know each other, you might find that you start to agree on more things, but you’ll never agree on everything. And there may be times when you find yourself bickering for the sake of it. Relationship fights shouldn’t be a major cause for concern, but there are situations when you should sit up and wonder whether you need to make an interjection.
If you’re not sure if you and your partner are having too many squabbles, be reassured that there is no right and wrong amount. However, it’s important to be careful that you’re not fighting for the sake of it, and to always make up properly afterwards. Let’s be honest, making up is the best part, right?
[Read: Relationship arguments and 23 dos and don’ts to always remember]
Why do couples have relationship fights in the first place?
Because couples consist of human beings and human beings have emotions. We’re not robots, we can’t autopilot throughout every single day and not feel anything. In the space of any given day, you can feel a huge range of emotions, depending upon what is going on around you and how you feel about it. In addition, these emotions can cause you to say things you might not have meant, and the other person can misunderstand you completely.
These things cause arguments. Relationship fights are normal, but too many is a red flag sign that something might be a little wrong.
In some ways, having arguments can be healthy because it clears the air, forces you to communicate in order to solve the problem, and it shows that you care. There is passion there, fire, and when that fire erupts, arguments happen. If you don’t argue, that’s a red flag too because it might signal that the emotion has gone out of the relationship. When that happens, there’s not a lot left to fight for. [Read: Why fighting in a relationship is one of the most important things couples can do]
Relationship fights and the common reasons that start a fight
There are some common reasons for relationship fights, but they vary from couple to couple. Unresolved issues are a major sticking point for most couples. This means that you didn’t quite figure something out the last time you argued, and it’s managed to spill over again. Perhaps one partner is feeling stressed at work and that causes them to say something they don’t mean, therefore causing a fight.
Partners can sometimes start to have relationship fights when they’re spending a little too much time together. That might sound ridiculous, but we all need our space occasionally. If you’re constantly by each other’s sides, you’re going to start annoying one another at some stage! COVID lockdown is a huge problem when it comes to relationship fights. We’re not used to spending this much time at home. And when we’re in the same space for longer than normal, it’s easy to feel a little suffocated. That can cause fights over the smallest, most ridiculous things. I had an argument with my partner last week about laundry detergent. Seriously, laundry detergent. Go figure, right?
The bottom line is that there are a huge number of reasons why a couple may start having fights and it’s normal to do so. It’s part of life and in many ways, it shows that you care, it shows that your emotions are working well. [Read: How to stop fighting with your boyfriend and hurting each other for all the wrong reasons]
Is it normal to fight every day in a relationship?
Whilst relationship fights are normal, fighting every day isn’t. You can disagree a little every day, because you’re two individuals who have your own views, but those disagreements shouldn’t turn into full on fights and rows.
There is no right or wrong number in terms of how many arguments you should be having in your relationship. You might go weeks and not say a cross word to one another. And then, you might have a spate of arguments within a small amount of time. It depends on what is going on in your life, and how you feel about it. As long as you’re able to communicate effectively after the argument, and you don’t allow your emotions to bubble up to the point where you say something hurtful to your partner, you’ll be able to overcome it as a team. [Read: Why you keep having the same fights and how to break this unhealthy pattern]
How to fight fair in a relationship
It’s important to know how to fight fair in a relationship too. That means not intentionally using your partner’s sensitive spots to hurt them for no reason. That’s not fighting fair and is simply being mean. For instance, if your partner is quite sensitive about their weight, it’s not right or fair to make a comment about it during an argument. That means you’re trying to win by pushing your partner down.
Instead, say what you want to say. Raise your voice if you really want to. But make sure you’re saying things that are factual, and you’re expressing how you feel about them. Don’t use competitive tactics or nastiness to win.
There is no real right or wrong way to have an argument. Arguments aren’t fun and they’re not times in your life when you have a huge amount of control over the situation. However, simply avoiding nastiness and ‘one upmanship’ should see you through. [Read: 18 very bad habits that’ll make your partner seriously want to leave you]
15 signs you’re having too many relationship fights
So, how can you tell if you’re having too many relationship fights? I mentioned that there’s no right or wrong number of arguments you should have as a couple, but there is certainly a situation when things might need to be considered as ‘rocky’.
Here are 15 signs you’re having too many fights and you need to stage an intervention.
#1 You can’t communicate without starting a fight. Relationship fights shouldn’t be more common than having regular conversations with one another. Communication is a key factor in a healthy relationship and if you can’t talk about things, even fun things, without it sparking a row, you’ve got problems. [Read: 12 key moments in a relationship that predict your future together]
#2 You bring up details of the last fight into the next one. Not sorting out the details of the last argument means that you’re probably going to take them into the next one, and the next one is going to come pretty quick on its heels too. Relationship fights need to be resolved otherwise they’re not a healthy tool for sorting out problems.
#3 You’re arguing every day. If you’re arguing every single day, that’s far too much. I know I said there’s no right or wrong amount, but every single day is too far. When do you get the chance to have fun together? Never, if you’re arguing constantly. Your relationship has become a battleground and there’s no fun in that.
#4 You feel like you can’t express your feelings. You’re having too many relationship fights if you feel like you can’t talk about your feelings without knowing that it’s going to spark another argument. Again, communication is so vital, and if you can’t talk about things which are hurting you out of fear of a fight, that’s a huge red flag. [Read: How to bring up something that is bothering you without getting into another fight]
#5 You focus on the things that annoy you, rather than the things you like. When you’re in a fighting mindset, you become very negative. You start to focus on the things about your partner which annoy you. Instead, turn your attention to the things you like. We all have negative traits, but that doesn’t mean we should focus on them.
#6 Criticism has become a regular occurrence. A relationship that focuses upon criticizing each other is downright unhealthy. That is a sign of far too many relationship fights because the air around the two of you has become toxic. It’s time to sit down and get to the bottom of what is causing all of these arguments. [Read: How to react when your spouse says hurtful things and keep the calm]
#7 Tough conversations are too difficult, so you avoid them. In every single relationship, there needs to be times when you sit down and have conversations that are a little difficult or deep. Healthy couples can do so without fearing it turning into a screaming match. It comes down to effective communication and being able to speak and listen in turn. Avoiding tough conversations is a damage limitation measure and not a long-term solution.
#8 You would rather spend time alone than with your partner. If you know that you’re just going to end up having another fight, you’ll probably prefer to spend time alone, in solitude and quiet. You might even prefer to spend time around your friends instead. If you’d rather be away from your partner because you’re sick of the relationship fights, that’s a sign you’re having far too many. [Read: Is a lack of affection in a relationship the time to walk away?]
#9 Apologies are never given. The best way to end an argument is to accept blame if you’re the one who needs to do so. If there is never a ‘sorry’ uttered, and by that I mean a heartfelt ‘sorry’, then you’ve got into the habit of arguing for the sake of it.
#10 You regularly go to bed angry. Allowing issues to fester is just going to lead to another argument the next day. My grandma always told me that you should never go to bed on an argument and it’s a piece of advice I live by today. Going to bed angry just means you’re going to wake up angry too. Talk about it before you sleep and fix things as best you can. [Read: The right priority in your relationship – How to find yours and focus on it]
#11 Honesty is lacking in your relationship. Not feeling like you can be open and honest with your partner, or feeling like they’re not doing the same with you, can lead towards bickering and relationship fights. You’re fighting too much if you no longer feel you can be open with your partner or honest about things going in your relationship and life.
#12 You feel like you’re on an emotional rollercoaster. A key sign of too many relationship fights is that you feel like you’re stuck on a never-ending emotional rollercoaster. Whilst some fighting is normal, feeling like you’re always on edge and always upset is not normal and should never become commonplace.
#13 You don’t care as much as you did, you simply argue for the sake of it. When you feel like arguing has become routine, you start to care less. That’s one of the major signs that you’re having too many relationship fights. Issues have become insurmountable and instead, you fight about everything else around that subject. You can’t see a way out of it, so you simply arguing for the sake of it instead. [Read: 15 signs of a failing relationship that predict the end of love]
#14 You find yourself bickering about stupid things. It’s normal to fight about random things occasionally *laundry detergent, remember?* but if it’s a regular event, you need to question why. This could be a sign of unresolved issues that are simply making the relationship feel toxic.
#15 Your friends tell you they’re concerned. If your friends tell you that they think you’re fighting too much with your partner, you should sit up and take notice. Often, someone on the outside looking in can see more clearly than someone who is in the thick of it.
How to make up after a fight
Making up after a fight is the most important part of the whole thing. Sure, go for the whole make up sex thing if you want. In fact I encourage it, but make sure you’ve resolved the problem first. [Read: The art of make up sex – A guide to master the romp after the rage]
Communicate! Talk it through calmly and accept accountability if you need to. Express your feelings in a calm and open way, using “I” statements rather than blame-like “you” statements. By doing so, you can overcome the problem in a mature way and stop the issue from starting another fight tomorrow or the next day.
[Read: 17 sweetest ways to genuinely say you’re sorry and make up after a fight]
Relationship fights are normal, but arguing all the time isn’t. Focus on effective communication and make sure that any fight you do have, is resolved afterwards. Leaving issues to fester will simply cause the problem to worsen.
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