Post # 1
Title pretty much says it all. Does anyone else feel like they repeat the same fight with their SO? Any ideas or experience of how to break out of the cycle? (Besides therapy.) Books, articles, techniques, etc?
I feel like DH and I have the same fight over and over again. It’s nothing huge, I think just a communication style issue. In fact, I don’t even see it as “us” having a fight…it’s more like me fighting at him, so it’s pretty my 100% my issue to fix. I want to figure out how to change this pattern before it erodes our otherwise very positive relationship.
Post # 2
Whats the issue? Obviously it’s the problem that you’re fighting about that you need to solve rather than the cycle. I’m sure if you shared that people would be able to help you more.
Post # 3
cbgg: I didn’t mean to sound like i think we are perfect when i selected ” fight? heavens, why would i ever fight with my darling SO?” LOL – it is just that for the past two years…we havent really fought. Get irritated? Yes – we just moved and there was plenty of times I was being moody haha, but it never turns into a fight.
the first year was a little rocky and we would argue. It really depends what the fight is about. If you don’t address it, then it will keep coming up. Once we got over some issues – it has been clear sailing and never came up again.
Is it the actual topic or the communication style that you think is causing the issue?
Post # 4
cbgg: If there is a specific issue that is the subject of this fight, can you not simply place it off limits? It must be clear by now that you are never going to agree.
Post # 5
cbgg: We had a fight that was just running itself in circles for over a year. It was awful and really made me question our relationship.
Recently I was at my breaking point and the mother of all fights ensued (for us anyways). At the end of it we realized we were just running around in circles and never actually resolving anything. So we both sat down and put what we wanted on the table. We took what was important and comprimised with that to reach a solution that would work for the both of us.
Post # 6
It’s normal to have repeated friction over an area in which you dOnt line up. At that point you just agree to disagree- respect and accept how the other person feels and move on. If neither of you will budge your position that’s all you can do!
Post # 7
MsChandler: Sure, I’ll share if that might help. The fight pretty much goes like this:
– DH is being illogical in some way. Usually this relates to us hammering out the logistics on plans that we’re making.
– I get irritated and eventually start using a snarky tone with him asking bitchy questions like, “so explain to me exactly how that make sense,” and sometimes even get to the stage of blowing up at him.
– He never blows up back (because he’s an angel) and is like, “lady, what’s your problem?”
– I feel like an a-hole for losing my temper when I should just be patient and solve the problem.
– I apologize for losing my temper, he forgives me, and we move on, but it happens frequently enough that it’s clearly a problem.
So obviously it’s totally my issue and it’s about controlling my temper & being more patient. I don’t really know why, but it’s always about some sort of logistical issue. So incredibly stupid. It’s at the point where I know it’s going to happen and I’m thinking to myself, “don’t be bitchy, don’t be bitchy” but then I’m just bitchy anyway. I’m so annoyed with myself.
Post # 8
leisha606: MrsBuesleBee: WeddingBells2014: julies1949: Thanks ladies, your comments are helping me narrow it down that I think it’s more of a communication style (on my side) issue, rather than an issue with a certain topic.
Has anyone ever had to do some work on their communication style and have any resources or techniques they can recommend?
Post # 9
cbgg: First of all, I salute you OP… I admire your sense of self-reflection and humility about the whole thing. Usually you hear people bagging on their spouse cuz they’re the one with the real problem, forever and always, etc so yeah, Dayum girl.<br /><br />Second of all, commenting to follow because i voted YES and am wondering the same thing haha. (also in first year of marriage so that might explain a bit)
Post # 10
- Wedding: September 2014 - Villa Celeste
My fiance and I usually don’t fight over the same thing, but we do occasionally argue. I don’t really have the tendency to get mad, as more often I get upset and shut down. This wasn’t helping our communication whatsoever, and so if I do feel myself getting upset I choose to walk away from the moment. It doesn’t have to be a huge dramatic exit but simply a “I need a minute to calm down, and we can address this in a little bit”
However, I feel this only works if you actually come back to the issue, once you’ve calmed down. I find after a little while to myself, I generally think more logically and am able to rationalize my thoughts better. Most of the time, I would encourage you not to use this as a cop out. Only walk away from the discussion if you feel you are going to blow up. Other than that, my advice would be to calmly talk it out. “I” statements, as cliche as they may be actually do work more often than not. Coming from a place of “hurt” is usually mor effective than anger. If you tell your SO that you’re hurt, or feeling bad opposed to telling him “you’re being this, this, this and this” I think that will help you express your emotions in a healthier way.
Also- pick your battles. Try and figure out why something is bothering you, opposed to just making blanket statements. What is it about what your SO says/does that affects you in a bad way? etc.
Post # 11
Try very hard not to use the word “you”. Instead, substitute “I’.
When you speak about yourself, your feelings, your thoughts, your actions, you are owning them and much less likely to start attacking him.
In the context of a disagreement or fight, “you” is accusatory almost 100% of the time.
Rather than so explain to me exactly how that make sense try “help me understand”.
You could take a communication course, but you can also find good books and online resources.
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Post # 12
cbgg: FH and I used to have the same ‘argument’ over and over again, until I finally realized that I always said the SAME THING, he wasn’t understanding what I was trying to say and felt like I was just trying to drive my point down his throat. Once I found new ways to explain my thoughts & feelings we’ve been able to communicate better.
If it’s not getting through/across the way you’re saying it, pause, think about what you’re saying, and think of another way to explain what you’re trying to say.
Post # 13
I’m going throug something similar with my FI. I go to CBT and it’s been really helping me with a lot of stuff.
My therapist has explained to me that as humans we try to change people we are in relationships with (whether we mean to or not!). By thinking stuff such as ‘why can’t he see my point of view’ or ‘how doesn’t he understand this’ we are implying that they SHOULD be able to see our side, and therefore be more like us. We create our own sets of rules, and get upset/hurt/angry when others don’t follow them, which isn’t really a constructive thing to do!
We can’t change others – we can only change the way we think about them, feel about those feelings, and react to what they say/do. A lot of what you’re saying sounds like you should look into negative thinking styles, and learn how to recognise them (seriously, it happens way more often than you think!). Once you can recognise them it’s not that those negative thoughts will disappear, but you can learn to see them, and pull back from getting angry or reacting poorly, therefore causing an argument.
It’s also important to notice that you’re not always going to agree, or even come close to a conclusion – it’s one of the many wonders of being an individual not an android! Sometimes we have to learn how to agree to disagree and leave things without putting them fully to bed. Tricky to do, but definitely worth it sometimes.
Helpful link: http://www.getselfhelp.co.uk/unhelpful.htm
Post # 14
cbgg: I don’t think that you are being fair to yourself by saying that this issue is all your fault! Your response may not be the best, but your DH is clearly triggering you to get upset with whatever vague illogical behavior that you mentioned. Re-occurring fights happen because the underlying issues are not being resolved. Dig deep and try to figure out exactly what the problem is. Then I would have an open and honest talk with him about it. Something along the lines of:
-I’ve noticed that we have been having the same fight, and I really would like to get this issue resolved…
-It bothers me when you (yada yada yada)
-If you could try to be a little more (yada yada yada), it would really make me happy.
-I KNOW THAT I HAVEN’T RESPONDED TO YOU IN THE BEST WAY IN THE PAST, BUT I PROMISE TO WORK ON MY TEMPER AND PATIENCE REGARDING THIS ISSUE. I ALSO PROMISE TO WORK ON (whatever else you have contributed to the conflict)
-I love you, and I want us to reach a resolution 🙂
I think that an approach like this (or similar) could actually break the cycle if you and DH are BOTH willing to identify your individual contribution to the conflict and put an honest effort into modifying those behaviors. I put that one statement in caps because I think it’s important to take responsibility full for your actions, and not play the blame game. It also facilitates a more positive and compassionate vibe during a tough conversation.
I’m not going to lie, it’s hard work! Your DH will need to be willing to work on meeting your needs better in the situation, and you will need to work on your temper. Just like anything else, changing your response takes practice! Stop beating yourself up about it! Even when someone is trying to change a behavior, they WILL have slip-ups here and there. As long as you both are actively trying to improve the situation, you will build a stronger relationship and ultimately reach a resolution 🙂
Post # 15
We use “we” when we argue. I wouldn’t say we fight. I consider that a HUGE thing, but argue most definitely.
It is hard to argue fair, but it can be done. Listen more than you talk. I talked too much when we would argue, and I never realized that DH, although I was upset with him, could actually bring the situation from a boil to a simmer.
Sometimes it’s hard to just take a step back and not say anything until you’re cool (or anything ever), but it can save yourself a headache and words you will regret.