Anyone who says they never fight with their other half is either a robot of they’re lying. Arguments are par for the course in every single relationship and they don’t mean that your coupleship is doomed to crash and burn. In fact, a little bit of conflict can be a good way to get things out in the open and to ensure that each of your are getting what you need from the relationship.
During wedding planning you may notice that you and your partner are arguing a little more than usual. Maybe your significant other isn’t playing as significant a part in the planning as you would like. Perhaps they’re playing too much of a part and disagreeing with you on every decision. The truth is that wedding planning can be stressful, whether it’s cutting people from the guest list or sticking to your budget, there will always be sticking points on the road to your big day.
So what can you do to handle those inevitable disagreements along the way?
What’s the common denominator?
Every couple has a recurring fight. What’s yours? Maybe it happens when you feel your other half isn’t listening or perhaps you get agitated because they’ve left the toilet seat up… again. The trick is to get curious about the things you’re fighting about. Why does this particular thing rub you up the wrong way? When you look at your fights more objectively it makes it easier to understand and defuse them. Yep, that argument about toilet paper isn’t really about toilet paper.
Prepare and regroup
Setting aside a time to argue might sound like the least fun date ever, but it can really help if an argument is getting heated. Don’t be afraid to call time on a fight and agree to pick it up later in the evening. Doing so means that you can both cool off and get clarity on your feelings and the best way to communicate them.
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Replace You with I
“You never help me with any of the wedding planning.” “You won’t compromise on the guest list.” “You aren’t sticking to the budget.” Do these phrases sound familiar? When we fight we often use accusatory statements that begin with “you”. Our partner then gets defensive and the argument spirals and suddenly you’re arguing about how one of you never takes the bins out. A more effective – and less confrontational – way to get your point across is to replace your You with I. So, “I would like more help with the wedding planning.” “I would like if we could try to reach a compromise on the guest list.” “I would like us to have enough money for the wedding of our dreams.” These statements are much more likely to open up a discussion, rather than start a fight. And bonus point, they’ll probably get you what you want.
Listen and clarify
In the heat of the moment, it’s say to interrupt and start arguing your point before your partner has finished speaking, but if you’re to stop an argument spiralling you need to take a deep breath and let each other finish. Not only that, it’s important to get completely clear on what you’re both saying so things don’t get misinterpreted. Use questions like “can you explain that in more detail?” or “why does that make you feel that way?”.
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Kiss and make up
Sorry may be the hardest word but apologising is pretty essential if you’re to move forward. Even if you feel you aren’t the one at fault, you’ve likely both said things to hurt one another, so make it up with a sincere sorry. Avoid phrases like “Im sorry but…” or using excuses, and instead own up to your part in it. A good way to seal the deal and ensure you’re friends again? Use your partner’s love language when you apologise. Show them they’re appreciated with a loving hug, a kind compliment, a cup of tea or by offering them whatever makes them feel special. Awwww.