We all know that disagreeing with your sweetheart is inevitable (it can also be healthy for a couple to argue occasionally). But that's not always the case. Sometimes those arguments are just unnecessary, which allows anger, resentment and other harsh feelings seep into an otherwise happy marriage. To avoid this problem, you and your honey should only argue about what's necessary.
Whether your spouse said something unintentionally hurtful or you two can't agree on what movie to watch, it's important to ask yourself this one question before striking up an argument:
Why does this matter to me?
It's easy to point fingers and place blame when you're upset. But before you do so, ask yourself why you're upset and why something bothers you. This helps you to be more self-reflective instead of getting defensive.
Sometimes it's important to address a problem, but other times it's best to let things be so you two can both move on.
When you find ways to be self-reflective during a disagreement, you will be able to figure out what matters most to you, and what doesn't really matter at all. If your spouse said something hurtful, ask yourself,"'why did that hurt me?" You'll be able to get to the root of the problem and work on resolution, instead of giving into a defensive reaction that prevents you from thinking clearly.
Figuring out why your spouse's comment unintentionally hurt you can help you figure out if this is something that needs to be addressed, or if this is something to let go. When your partner makes a hurtful comment ask yourself why you found it hurtful: do you feel like your spouse doesn't love you? Or that your opinion was disregarded? These are problems that need addressing.
When you can give names to your feelings, you'll be able to speak rationally when you bring it up with your spouse.
And, because you are thinking rationally, you'll avoid the disagreements that suddenly turn into heated arguments. Many couples say things they don't mean and give a voice to their anger and pride without giving it any thought. Luckily, that's easily avoided if you are thinking rationally about the problem.
It isn't uncommon for couples to get into arguments because someone's pride is getting in the way of thinking rationally. (Maybe you're upset because your spouse told you something that you don't want to admit is true.) Whatever it is, give yourself time to think things through so you understand how you're feeling, and can decide whether or not it's worth addressing.
Once you understand how you're feeling, it will be easier to find an answer to why you're feeling that way. At that point, you might decide you're being silly, and you'll choose to move on.
However, if you decide that this is something worth addressing with your love, you'll be able to do so in a smooth, constructive manner.
The most important thing to remember is how much you love your spouse. When they say or do something hurtful, give them the benefit of the doubt, and know that they love you, too.
Some arguments are inevitable, but when you choose to be more self-reflective and loving, you'll be able to talk things through without anything get out of hand. You two will grow stronger because of these hurdles that come your way.
Emily Brady is a member of the FamilyShare content team. She studied Communication with an emphasis in journalism. She loves photography and finding a good book to read in her hammock on a sunny, breezy day.