Sometimes, I feel a little bit like a fraud. Usually, it includes arguments with the hubbs. I have to remind myself that conflict in a relationship is inevitable. When I was separating from my ex husband, he agreed to go to counseling. The counselor asked us, “What did you learn from your parents about fighting?” I said I learned that you yell and scream until you get your way. He said his parents never fought. The counselor replied, I guarantee you your parents fought. They just didn’t do it right in front of you. Which approach is better? Neither!

Every couple has their “greatest hits.” Those fights that happen over and over again without any good resolution. This is how we handle those fights now. The hubbs is about the most non-confrontational person on the planet. Sometimes this is great and sometimes it just makes me want to strangle him. When we have “that” fight for the upteenth time, one of us will say we have got to stop this. What solution can we come up with so that this doesn’t happen again? Some does and don’ts

Don’t check out- You’ve got to invest yourself in your relationship. If you’re checking out, you’re halfway gone.

Don’t name call- Trust me, you will regret calling your SO stupid or fat after the fight. Best just to not do it.

Don’t forget that you love this person- Don’t fight dirty.

Don’t get historical- Past arguments are just that, in the past. Let them stay there.

Don’t drag your terrible in-laws (or awesome in-laws) into the fight- You will be sorry. As the saying goes, you can talk bad about your family and they can talk bad about their family, but YOU cannot talk badly about THEIR family.

Do finish the fight- If you’re going to walk off and get a little distance, great. Don’t leave the fight until another time, because then you end up in a vicious circle.

Do apologize- This is such a big thing. For many people, saying those two little words (I’m sorry) are extremely difficult. The hubbs is one of those people, but he will show me in so many other ways he is sorry. He’ll ask what he can do for me, snuggle, bring me home my favorite candy bar the next day. I know the words are hard for him, but I know he means it when he’s extra-attentive. Even apologize if you don’t think you did anything wrong. I guarantee you can find something you did.

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Anna Levenson-Pintrest