Guess what? You’re off the hook. You don’t need to sit around wonder if all the arguing means that your relationship is doomed. Science says that, that isn’t the case.
Recently, a survey was done in India among married couples to figure out how much arguing affected their relationship. And it turns out that 44% of responders attribute part of their marital success to how much they argue. They said that fighting more than once a week helps keep the lines of communication open.
And that isn’t all, another study done over 14 years found that couples who argued often and in a peaceful manner were more likely not be separated. This study followed 79 married couples across the US Midwest. According to FamilyShare, the common thread between the strongest couples is that they argued, and immediately talked openly and honestly about the argument.
Arguing for A Healthy Relationship
First, there is a difference between fighting and arguing. Arguing is a healthy way to get emotions out on the table. In fact, the quickest relationship killer is allowing your emotions to stew. Next thing you know, you’re a bomb waiting to explode. It isn’t a matter of if at this point, it’s a matter of when your emotions will get the better of you and you’ll have a relationship altering fight.
Without question, letting your emotions stew will lead to resentment.
And, frankly, arguments are just part of a relationship that isn’t boring. In fact, in this article at the Star Tribune, Sandy Burris, who’s been married almost 60 years, says, “We do [argue all the time]. There are a lot of things we don’t agree on. If we did agree all the time, it would be boring.”
If you’ve been married happily for that long, you must be doing something right. I’m sure you can remember a relationship that just went stale when you’ve been thinking just tell me I did something wrong for once!
As for kids, many family counselors site peaceful arguing as part of a positive model, as William Doherty, a professor in the University of Minnesota’s Department of Family Social Science stated. “If they never see you argue, they’re going to get a very unrealistic image of marriage,” he said, “If it’s hostile, contemptuous, full of shouting and name-calling, that’s bad. But if it’s a small irritation that is addressed respectfully and the kids see that 15 minutes later you’ve gotten over it and everything is fine again, that’s helpful.”
The point is, you can’t play the blame game and expect your kids to grow positively, but you can teach them by example that it’s okay to disagree. It’s easy to show them that you can argue, come to a compromise, and still love each other fully. It seems that arguing is healthy for everyone involved, not just the couple. Arguing isn’t just a magic pill. There are obvious reasons why arguing makes couples stay together longer.
1. There’s No Resentment Between Partners
If you’re constantly holding it it, there will be resentment. The healthiest way to deal with negative feelings is to get them out in the open!
2. Couples Who Argue See Themselves as Equals
In a relationship is so important for partners to be on a level playing field. No one wins if someone is dominant over the other. And that’s what happens when couples don’t argue. Let’s face it, all people feel the need to stand their ground. In a relationship, if you don’t stand your ground and argue, you’re showing your partner that their opinion is more important, and they can have whatever they want. That’s the road to an unhealthy relationship.
3. Couples Who Challenge Each Other, Grow Together
It’s no secret that the quickest way to grow as a person is to overcome challenges. It’s also no secret that good relationships require both partners to push the other to be the best version of themselves. When arguing with a partner, it doesn’t matter if you win or lose. You will learn a lot about each other, and more importantly yourself. You’ll learn how to lose better, you will learn how to win with sportsmanship, and you’ll learn how to compromise more. These are all valuable traits in all parts of life.
If you want a healthy relationship, you shouldn’t avoid arguments. However, you shouldn’t go pick a fight with your spouse as soon as you’re done reading this. The bigger point here is that all people argue, and the way you argue is really important.
It’s important that arguments aren’t fights or all out wars. They need to be peaceful. And you should practice listening with the intent of understanding your partner, not so you can find our opportunity to speak. Next time you get in an argument with your partner, remember that you’re strengthening your bond if you’re doing it right.
Featured photo credit: Daily Record via dailyrecord.co.uk