How Do I Manage Conflict in a Romantic Relationship?

Every romantic relationship has trouble every now and again. Whether your conflict stems from differences in needs, desires, beliefs or opinions, couples must rely on each other to get through life’s issues, large and small. Romantic conflict can be a sign of anger in one partner or both and can be made into a positive if handled appropriately. While conflict is unavoidable, it can be managed with patience and understanding.

Step 1

Make yourself available. If you sense something is wrong, don’t avoid the situation. Dodging the issue will only make conflict worse and anger your significant other.

Step 2

Acknowledge and admit why you may be upset. Talking through your feelings can help prevent an explosive verbal fight in the future. Don’t assume your partner will know what’s wrong just by your body language or insinuations.

Step 3

Listen to your partner. Conflict can occur simply because you’ve misunderstood your significant other. When appropriate, ask questions and show both an interest and comprehension.

Step 4

Try to see the issue from the other person’s point of view. Being empathetic can help you to understand why or how you’re acting a certain way.

Step 5

Keep your cool. Yelling or saying things you don’t mean will only deepen the conflict between you and your significant other.

Step 6

Apologize when necessary and be prepared to make up. If you are the member at fault, saying you’re sorry can drastically alter the tension between you.

Step 7

Agree on what to do about your conflict. If one or both partners needs an attitude adjustment or to eliminate a disagreeable behavior, discuss a variety of options on how you both can change. Find a solution that is acceptable to both parties and plan ways to avoid conflict in the future.

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About the Author

Cait Hawley began writing and editing professionally in 2009. She is a digital editorial coordinator in Morrisville, N.C. She specializes in optimization of online advertising for small- to medium-sized businesses for the website dexknows. Her areas of interest include pets, culinary arts and cinema. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and literature from Elon University.

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