How To Handle Conflicts And Arguments In a Relationship/Marriage.

1. Don’t expect your partner/spouse to know he/she has offended if you don’t say it. Stop holding your hurt inside you; if you do, you will resent your partner/spouse thinking he/she doesn’t care, or he/she will find you hostile without understanding why

2. Control your temper. A hot temper will make you say or do something you will regret

3. Talk about the issue privately, away from children or the public

4. Find out all the facts, don’t jump into conclusion. Listen to your partner’s/spouse’s side of the story or the sequence of events

5. Do not attack your partner/spouse. Listen to him/her

6. Start talking about the issue with the words “You know I love you. I don’t like it when…” or “You know I love you. I have noticed that…”

7. Handle the issue quickly before it grows into something that is difficult to manage. Put out the fire when it is small

8. When talking about a present issue or conflict, don’t introduce a past issue or conflict that was already resolved

9. No matter how mad you are about what your partner/spouse did to you or you did to each other, ask him/her to pray with you. As you pray, tell God how angry you feel as your partner/spouse listens, ask for peace. Prayer humbles both of you and gives the peace and guidance to resolve the matter

10. Acknowledge your partner’s/spouse’s pain and hurt. Let him/her know he/she has every right to feel angry, hurt, offended, disrespected or ignored; depending on the matter, and you are on the wrong

11. Be quick to apologize. Say sorry. Say sorry even when it was something you did right but your partner/spouse interpreted it as wrong

12. Be quick to forgive. How serious you are about your relationship/marriage will be seen by how quick you forgive

13.Don’t try and justify your actions if you are clearly on the wrong. Sorry is not sincere if you try to decorate your mistakes. Own up to your mess

14. Don’t compare your partner/spouse with other people, saying, “Why can’t you be like so and so…” Never make the one you love feel not good enough

15. Don’t discourage your partner/spouse by not recognizing his/her effort. Be patient if your partner/spouse is making progress on an issue

16. Don’t tell your partner’s/spouse’s shortcomings to outsiders. When he/she feels covered by you, it makes it easier for you two to work it out

17. Don’t threaten to divorce or break up in order to scare your spouse/partner into action. The more the thoughts of separation will be entertained, the more the likelihood of separation

18. Don’t tell on your spouse to your spouse’s parents or your parents in a way that makes it seem you are treating your spouse like a child. Bringing the parents to the matter should be a joint decision

19. Don’t cut off communication. Pick up your phone when you spouse calls you, don’t run away, don’t give silent treatment. This is the time when communication is needed the most

20. Don’t bang doors, spit, insult, punish your spouse by failing to play your role as a way to show contempt or rebel. Marriage is not for child’s play. Stop being a child and talk about the matter

21. Don’t use sex as a weapon. Never play games with your sex life

22. Don’t focus on the issue that you both forget the bigger picture; how far you two have come, how much you two have been through together

23.,Don’t sleep in different bedrooms or move out leaving your spouse. You two should never get used to being apart

24. Agree on a way forward to avoid the matter repeating itself


© Dayan Masinde and Akello Oliech.

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