Take a minute to think about a married couple you think fights too much. Got a couple in mind? Great. Now define for yourself how much fighting is too much fighting. Chances are that your definition will differ from someone else’s. There is no black-and-white rule, which is why it is easy for us to look at other people and assume that they fight too much.
Fighting is a normal part of human relationships. It is the direct result of the fact that no two people are in perfect agreement on every single topic. Put two people in a room and they are bound to have a disagreement over something. It is unavoidable. That leads us back to whether couples can fight too much.
If you perceive that you and your spouse fight too much, the frequency of your fights might indicate that you have a problem. On the other hand, it might not. In the end, there are things about fighting that are more important than frequency. Below are three such things, offered by Relationships & More in Westchester County, NY.
What You Fight Over
Couples fight over both major and minor things. Moral conflicts and disagreements over how children are raised are major. What you are going to have for dinner or watch on TV tonight are minor. There is a healthy balance of both that indicates they communicate on multiple levels.
Do not assume that couples should never argue over minor things. They can, do, and should. But if the majority of arguments you and your spouse have are over minor things, it could be that you are both guilty of pettiness. That is cause for concern.
On the other hand, constantly fighting over major issues may signify that you have problems more serious than the fact that you fight. For example, constant moral conflicts could indicate that you and your spouse are not on the same page where right and wrong are concerned. That is also a cause for concern.
How You Fight
Next up is how you and your spouse fight. Take things out of the realm of your kitchen for a minute and think of a street fight. If one person brought only his fists while the other brought a bag full of weapons, that would be considered an unfair fight. Couples can fight unfairly, too.
Fair fights focus on the issue at hand. They do not bring up past events are outside influences. Fighting fair also means avoiding personal attacks, name-calling, insults, and the like. Fair fights do not rely on hitting below the belt to gain an advantage.
How You Resolve Your Fights
The most important factor of all is how you and your spouse resolve your fights. When a fight is over, is it really over? Or do you and your spouse continue to jab at one another for days on end? Healthy fights should have a definite conclusion even if that means spouses have to agree to disagree. Letting bad feelings linger is bad for any relationship.
As a side note, successfully resolving an issue means not bringing it up again. It may come up on its own during the natural course of life, but purposely bringing it up, knowing that it will start another fight, indicates that there something in your relationship that isn’t healthy.
Fighting in a marriage relationship is normal. There is no hard and fast rule defining how much fighting is too much. Rather, you should be more concerned over what you fight about, how you fight, and how those fights are resolved.