10 Methods for Resolving Marriage Conflict

Most individuals shy away from discussing marital conflict as if it were a taboo subject. However, it’s crucial to address issues with your partner promptly, regardless of the discomfort it may cause.

Many psychologists will agree that occasional conflict is a must-have ingredient for a happy marriage. “People have different systems of values, so it’s important to find a common ground in some of these situations,” warns Laura Gillis, a divorce lawyer from Phoenix.

Although conflict is vital, the way you handle it can make all the difference. While criticism can be positive in smaller quantities, you should never go overboard. So, to help our readers out, we’ve decided to list the best methods to resolve marriage issues without endangering the relationship’s integrity.

1.   Open Communication

You can never go wrong with honesty and directness. Many experts agree that effective communication is the main difference between unsuccessful and long-lived relationships.

People should be open about their marriage needs, feelings, and fears and encourage their partners to share their emotions and views. In addition to being a good communicator, you should also practice active, open-minded listening without judging your partner when their needs differ from yours.

2.   Use “I”

Psychologists often highlight that the use of the word “We” is important in marriages. It shows unity between partners and the fact that two people are on the same page when it comes to their wishes.

Nevertheless, you should also show individualism. When phrasing your sentences with “I,” you highlight that something is important to you. It’s also an effective way to disclose your feelings on a particular matter without passing blame.

3.   Time Your Conflicts

Timing can be every bit as important as the message you convey. There are situations when you should simply shut up and wait for a better moment.

Most importantly, you should always wait to resolve conflicts when you and your partner cool off. Going at each other while you’re angry will only lead to unnecessary drama and saying something you’ll regret later on. Avoid starting a fight when you’re busy, tired, or stressed.

4.   Empathize with Spouse

While it’s important to stick to your guns, you should also understand your partner’s point of view. Having a better understanding of their perspective makes it easier to find common ground and avoid future fighting.

In these situations, empathy can go a long way. It allows you to bridge the gap between the two sides and acknowledge each other’s point of view. So, even if you initially think the other person is wrong, you need to give them the benefit of the doubt.

5.   Stay Calm

As mentioned, you must stay calm and collected before and during conflicts. Many people unravel at this time, so you must avoid escalation at all costs. Most importantly, don’t insult or shout at your spouse during conflicts as this can cause a wide, sometimes irreparable gap between you two.

6.   Solve Issues

There are a few techniques that can help you resolve differences in opinion in these situations. Perhaps the best one is brainstorming compromises that will make both sides happy. Similarly, you can create a pros and cons list to pinpoint the best possible outcome for both parties. These techniques will not only prevent escalation but will help you tackle the issue once and for all.

7.   Find Compromise

Many people talk about compromise during marriage conflict but the ugly truth is that most of them would much rather “win.” You must put your ego aside during disputes and find solutions that would benefit both you and your partner. Among others, you need to remember that marriage isn’t a competition and there are no prizes if you’re victorious.

8.   Forgive Your Spouse

In certain instances, forgiving your spouse can be challenging. In these moments, words may fail to mend the situation, rendering conflict futile.

Nevertheless, a single mistake shouldn’t be the undoing of a strong marriage. It’s essential to find a path toward forgiveness, letting go of past grievances. If forgiveness proves elusive, it might be time to consider moving on and ending the marriage.

9.   Set Boundaries

Just as in any relationship, boundaries are essential in marriage. Defining personal space, individual needs, and future aspirations is particularly crucial for averting potential conflicts. Setting boundaries not only facilitates conflict resolution but also serves as a reference point in case of misunderstandings.

10. Seek Assistance

If none of these strategies yield results, don’t hesitate to seek professional assistance. Remember, there’s no shame in seeking marriage counseling. It can be incredibly beneficial, even when there are no apparent problems, as a means of addressing potential future issues.

Conclusion

In conclusion, navigating marriage conflict is a journey that demands patience, understanding, and a willingness to actively engage in resolution. By implementing the ten methods outlined in this article, couples can cultivate stronger relationships, fortified by effective communication, mutual respect, and a shared commitment to growth. From fostering empathy and forgiveness to setting clear boundaries and seeking professional guidance when needed, each strategy offers a pathway toward harmony and lasting happiness in marriage. Remember, conflict is not the enemy of marriage; instead, it is an opportunity for growth and deeper connection when approached with openness and a spirit of cooperation. With dedication and effort, couples can overcome challenges, strengthen their bond, and build a future filled with love, understanding, and shared joy.