The Great Divide in Relationships

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    Nov 21, 2010 1:21 AM GMT
    We seem to fight about every week. Things are awkward but we return to regular programming the next day or so. What I would call a big fight ensues about every couple of weeks. We remain hither and thither to avoid each other. And there are of course the hideous ones where one of us(me) doesn't come home for about a week and then we avoid each other for about another week. These happen about twice or thrice a year. Slowly things go back to normal.

    I'm afraid one of us is going to kill the other one. And really, we are too good looking to be behind bars.

    Sometimes, I think we fight just for the sake of fighting. Generally, our fights end as we're screaming at each other over a new issue and one of us leaves.

    These are rather silly questions, but I wonder. In no particular order:

    How often do you have fights with your significant other? What do you fight over?

    Is there something you would never do or say?

    If you have been together for some time now, has your fighting increased over time?

    Have your objectives for fighting changed over time?

    Is there usually a recognisable issue?

    Is the problem actually solved or does it remain to fester?

    How do you bring up the issue again without fighting?
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    Nov 21, 2010 1:54 AM GMT
    People have a hard time believing it, but my partner and I have never had an actual "fight". We have had disagreements of course, but we have talked them through without yelling or screaming. I think it is because neither of us likes drama and I deal with enough conflict in my line of work that I am pretty good at negotiating and talking things through without resorting to yelling or using insults.

    On the other hand, I know couples that seem to get off on fighting and then making up. They seem to like a more turbulent and, yes, passionate relationship than the one I have. icon_confused.gif
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    Nov 21, 2010 1:59 AM GMT
    sashaman saidPeople have a hard time believing it, but my partner and I have never had an actual "fight". We have had disagreements of course, but we have talked them through without yelling or screaming. I think it is because neither of us likes drama and I deal with enough conflict in my line of work that I am pretty good at negotiating and talking things through without resorting to yelling or using insults.

    On the other hand, I know couples that seem to get off on fighting and then making up. They seem to like a more turbulent and, yes, passionate relationship than the one I have. icon_confused.gif

    How interesting!
    What do you do when you feel like bashing his head into the wall or something?
    When there's just no reasoning with him?
  • misternick

    Posts: 234

    Nov 21, 2010 2:05 AM GMT
    I think as far as the "things you would never do or say" stuff, we generally consider anything done out of revenge would be a major, major no-no. We make mistakes and have lapses in judgement... but we talk it out, give each other space when necessary, and make sure that we aren't letting anything fester and swell into a petty anger issue.
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    Nov 21, 2010 2:07 AM GMT
    carminea said We seem to fight about every week. Things are awkward but we return to regular programming the next day or so. What I would call a big fight ensues about every couple of weeks. We remain hither and thither to avoid each other. And there are of course the hideous ones where one of us(me) doesn't come home for about a week and then we avoid each other for about another week. These happen about twice or thrice a year. Slowly things go back to normal.

    I'm afraid one of us is going to kill the other one. And really, we are too good looking to be behind bars.

    Sometimes, I think we fight just for the sake of fighting. Generally, our fights end as we're screaming at each other over a new issue and one of us leaves.

    These are rather silly questions, but I wonder. In no particular order:

    How often do you have fights with your significant other? What do you fight over?

    Is there something you would never do or say?

    If you have been together for some time now, has your fighting increased over time?

    Have your objectives for fighting changed over time?

    Is there usually a recognisable issue?

    Is the problem actually solved or does it remain to fester?



    How do you bring up the issue again without fighting?


    I'll try answer these Carminea, and Bill's here too.

    1 Fights? No, arguing yes. Never mean and an agreement made during our first two years together about talks have us removing any words that are cruel before we speak. Should either of us slip up, the other immediately states, 'Ouch that hurts.' and everything grinds to a halt til that is fixed.

    2 We argue over future plans and the impact of them on our families, for example. But these most here would find rather tame discussions. In the past most arguments were about how to argue and how to communicate better.

    3 Our arguments decreased over the earlier years and continue that trend, part of being completely open books to each other.

    4 We will never say "I hate you" or strike each other.

    5 There was always a recognizable issue. The moment one came up we dropped everything and dealt with it, even if it meant staying up all night and giving each other kleenexes over tears.

    6 see 5

    7 Yes, we solved issues as we went along and now when we speak of some of them we both blush and love each other and each other's past selves a little more. We recognize daily how lucky we are to have each other and that it could be taken away in a second by random circumstance. A bus accident etc, or a stroke or cardiac episode. This makes many issues rather trite.

    -Doug and Bill

    Here's a song we both live by, and we hope this helps explain:



    "If It's Magic" by Stevie Wonder

    If it's magic...
    Then why can't it be everlasting
    Like the sun that always shines
    Like the poets in this rhyme
    Like the galaxies in time

    If it's pleasing...
    Then why can't it be never leaving
    Like the day that never fails
    Like on seashores there are shells
    Like the time that always tells

    It holds the key to every heart
    Throughout the universe
    It fills you up without a bite
    And quenches every thirst

    So...
    If it's special
    Then with it why aren't we as careful

    Like making sure we dress in style
    Posing pictures with a smile
    Keeping danger from a child

    It holds the key to every heart
    Throughout the universe
    It fills you up without a bite
    And quenches every thirst

    So...
    If it's magic...
    Why can't we make it everlasting
    Like the lifetime of the sun
    It will leave no heart undone
    For there's enough for everyone





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    Nov 21, 2010 2:38 AM GMT
    Contrary to how it sounds, we're not Mexican soap opera stars. We really don't have that many shouting contests. We actually do work things out by just arguing in a normal level of voice most of the time.

    Those that happen a couple times a year are when the screaming happens. It happens when we can't solve the issue and things compile together. Then one of us slips, things go to far. And it's too late to just talk.We never curse at each other, our families are never insulted by either one.

    I feel like we're heading there again. See, we have off white paint in the whole house. It's dirty and hasn't been painted since about 9 years ago when the house was first built. I figured it's time for a change. I would be done by Christmas. Initially my partner said he doesn't care what I do. Increasingly, he keeps bringing it up and trying to lead me somewhere. He complains. About the cost, about the mess, about the time it takes, about the smell. He doesn't like this colour. He doesn't like that pattern. He doesn't like the way I do it. He doesn't like paint I picked. It's probably not even about the painting anymore. I just ignore that. I tried involving him. I tried bringing it up in conversation. The response: "Stop talking Carmine. I'm watching CSI." I don't bring it up anymore and walk around him on eggshells.

    Any suggestions? My sanity won't want me to stop painting. I actually like it.
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    Nov 21, 2010 2:50 AM GMT
    This sounds eerily familiar, and I'm feeling a little queasy. Your partner needs to help out or shut up, in my opinion. My relationship didn't withstand similar kind of behavior on my husband's part. Hell, I couldn't even create a f-ckin' child's birthday invitation right, but would he lift a finger?

    I see you're both Dads, too. What do you tell the kids, when one of you "disappears" for a week?
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    Nov 21, 2010 3:39 AM GMT
    a_real_person said
    I see you're both Dads, too. What do you tell the kids, when one of you "disappears" for a week?

    When he leaves, he takes them with him and stays with his parents. When I leave I tell them I'm going to stay at my mother's. I see them and spend time with them even then, I'm just make sure not to be there when he's going to be home. We never fight when they're home. All they can tell is that we're unhappy. We try not to make them feel this inadequacy, but children can be incredibly perceptive.
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    Nov 21, 2010 4:47 AM GMT
    carminea said
    sashaman saidPeople have a hard time believing it, but my partner and I have never had an actual "fight". We have had disagreements of course, but we have talked them through without yelling or screaming. I think it is because neither of us likes drama and I deal with enough conflict in my line of work that I am pretty good at negotiating and talking things through without resorting to yelling or using insults.

    On the other hand, I know couples that seem to get off on fighting and then making up. They seem to like a more turbulent and, yes, passionate relationship than the one I have. icon_confused.gif

    How interesting!
    What do you do when you feel like bashing his head into the wall or something?
    When there's just no reasoning with him?


    Well, if I feel like I can't deal with the situation in a reasonable manner, I let him know I need some time to myself. I have to admit, he's pretty reasonable most of the time - DAMN HIM! icon_biggrin.gif

    As for you, if your partner doesn't want to talk about painting the house, I'd take that as cart blanche to go ahead and paint it. Unless he's the passive aggressive type, then you're screwed! icon_wink.gif
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    Nov 21, 2010 5:42 AM GMT
    Fighting doesn't means that your relationship is flawed, or that you have poor communication skills.

    As much as I enjoy me fight free relationship, I don't attribute it to how smart and wise we are, I rather think that our personalities, and the interaction of our personalities, doesn't generate tense situation naturally.
    Ok, when tense times occurs, and they alway do, we both make effort to solve them without fight, applying good communication rules,but it's because it's what makes both of use feel good.

    Any lasting relationship result of a compromise between your needs, the needs of your partner, and the needs of your couple.

    If your personality demand sometime a burst of anger to evacuate pressure, so be it.

    May be it's not about inability to fix problem, and just about the need to express yourself with anger.

    As hard as we try, it's difficult to be more, or less, than what we are, there is nothing bad or wrong about having a more or less explosive personality.

    If you sacrifice your emotional stability trying to repress anger, it will likely explode later and stronger.

    If both you and you partner sometime feel anger, and one start to express it, then the other would feel frustrated to restrain his own for the good of your couple while your partner do not. It can escalate.

    I think you are trying too hard to behave like someone that is not you.

    Give each other the right to be angry, the right to explode, just find good communication rule and boundaries, explicity, to avoid it making damage to your relationship.


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    Nov 21, 2010 5:43 AM GMT
    carminea said
    a_real_person said
    I see you're both Dads, too. What do you tell the kids, when one of you "disappears" for a week?

    When he leaves, he takes them with him and stays with his parents. When I leave I tell them I'm going to stay at my mother's. I see them and spend time with them even then, I'm just make sure not to be there when he's going to be home. We never fight when they're home. All they can tell is that we're unhappy. We try not to make them feel this inadequacy, but children can be incredibly perceptive.


    I can only speak for our situation, but it definitely put a strain on the entire family. I just told them for months after the break-up that it wasn't their fault, until they got tired of hearing it. :-)