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Why You Keep Having the Same Fight: How to Break an Unhealthy Cycle

If your relationship is starting to feel like a bad pattern of similar arguments, you are probably asking yourself why you keep having the same fight?

why you keep having the same fight

Fighting in a relationship is normal and healthy. No couple will agree on everything. Things come up and cause problems. But, if you find yourself wondering why you keep having the same fight over and over, it could be a sign of a bigger problem that you aren’t facing.

If every discussion or argument circles back to that one topic, it could be a bigger problem than you realize.

Sure, you notice that topic creeping its way into your everyday talks and causing resentment. Do you know why? And have you thought about what to do about it?

[Read: Why fighting in a relationship is important and how to do it right]

Why you keep having the same fight

A fight that reoccurs numerous times is usually something from the past that you haven’t really dealt with as a couple. Maybe you talked about it but didn’t come to a conclusion. Or maybe you did, but are second-guessing that decision.

If small fights about taking out the trash turn into big fights like your partner going to lunch with their ex two years ago, there is something being left unsaid. It is leading to resentment and fears about the future.

Often times, these things cause additional fights because they are pushed off originally. When an issue comes up and you hold back, it can be brushed under the rug until the rug is so built up you keep tripping over it.

[Read: What does a healthy relationship actually look like?]

When you communicate your fears and problems to your partner as they arise, you get those feelings out in the open. They are more likely to be solved soon and smoothly. When you talk about these things, you build confidence in the relationship and in each other. But, if you don’t, it leads to explosive fights that could cause further problems.

Maybe you’re afraid to bring something up because you don’t want to seem like you’re nagging them or uncool for being bothered by your partner’s friendship with an ex.

Also, your fights could be repetitive but just that. You could keep saying the same things. Maybe instead of listening to the other’s side, you constantly blame each other for something.

Arguments are healthy in a relationship. When you keep having the same fight, it means that fight isn’t solving anything. You’re not really communicating but talking at each other.

[Read: 10 communication techniques to use to really get your partner to open up to you]

You also must consider what the topic you keep fighting about is. Have you solved it already? If your partner cheated and you forgave them, bringing it up every time they do something wrong or when they’re mad at you isn’t right.

If you say you are over something or that you forgave them or let it go, actually follow through on it. Bringing up something from the past that was worked through just so you win an argument or make them feel bad is manipulative and unhealthy.

If you find that you actually can’t let go of something you thought you could, consider the long term effects. Do you simply need more time or will this bother you forever?

Now that you know why you keep having the same fight, figure out how to stop having the same fight.

[Read: How resentment can grow in a relationship and how to weed it out]

How to stop having the same fight

Putting an end to something so big that it keeps creeping into all your arguments won’t be easy. You can’t just let go of something that is clearly on your mind, even if it is buried in the back.

In order to stop this messy circle of the same fight, stop and sort out the problem. Consider if the problem means more than you originally thought or if it can be worked through together. [Read: 12 double standards in a relationship and why they’re toxic AF]

#1 Have you faced it? Is the issue that keeps arising something you pass by in your fights but never actually discuss? Maybe you get mad at your partner because they never want to do anything exciting. Then, instead of talking about it, you both storm off until you cool down and move on.

Many of us grew up with parents that didn’t work through issues but instead avoided confrontation. That unhealthy communication pattern passed onto us. Fighting can seem like a stain on a relationship, so to maintain a sense of harmony many people ignore the problem hoping it will go away. But this method only leads to festering which makes things worse.

In that case, nothing is solved and the topic is only touched. Take the time to talk and listen so you can understand each other’s side. If you can do that, you can come to a compromise. [Read: 15 signs of a failing relationship that predict the end of love]

#2 Can you let go of being right or winning? These fights can keep arising because of you or your partner’s need to be right or be in control. Solving an argument that keeps coming up needs care and respect. If you only see it from your side and don’t consider your partner’s feelings, things will just stay as they are.

Be willing to give a little to get anywhere. We want to save face, so we hit below the belt. We attack our partner’s biggest insecurities or they us to get the leg up. This tactic keeps us from being vulnerable.

If anytime we have a fight, we bring up this sensitive topic we know we won’t be the one being attacked. At least we won’t be attacked regarding something we are sensitive about. These recurring fights could be a sign that one of you has a wall up about an even deeper issue.

If one or neither of you is willing to be vulnerable and really share your feelings, the true problem will never be solved. [Read: The right way to fight fair in a relationship]

#3 Is it a dealbreaker? Maybe when this fight initially started, you thought you could get through it. It’s something you could let go of. Now that you’ve been together longer, you might realize it is more important than you thought or maybe you were in denial before.

I hate to say this, but some problems are unfixable. Yes, couples should be able to have disagreements and beliefs that differ while being at peace. Nevertheless, some core issues are too much. If this topic keeps coming up because it affects you more than you originally thought or admitted, it could be time to make a hard choice about it if this relationship can survive such a split.

[Read: How to fix a toxic relationship… can you or is it too far gone?]

Maybe you both have different politics and can understand where the other is coming from on most topics, but have one that is something neither of you is willing to budge on or understand. You could tell yourself it’s not something you’ll have to deal with and forget about it. But if the issue does come up, it could cause irreparable damage. [Read: 15 big relationship questions you must answer before the next level]

You really have to be able to admit which issues you can face together and which you can’t. Maybe a certain topic is off the table for discussion because you know you’ll never agree. But, say that issue is religion. You can have different beliefs, but what about children?

Will you raise your child under both religions, none, or one of them? Will you be able to make a choice you can both be happy with? That is the question you ultimately have to answer.

[Read: Why something feels off in your relationship and what to do about it]

Figuring out why you keep having the same fight is the first step to stop having the same fight. Make the effort to figure out why the same arguments keep looping forever and that will guide you towards a better future and a healthier relationship.

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Samantha Ann
My name is Samantha Ann. I am 28 years old. It was always my dream to become an advice columnist, so after years of off and online dating and eventually finding...