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How much fighting is too much fighting?

TLDR: How much fighting is considered too much fighting is often rooted in your comfort level around conflict. Two people might be having the same conversation and one considers it a fight, whereas the other considers it a mere conversation. The key is to talk about it with your partner. And remember, there are many points in a relationship where increased arguments are natural. Fighting is a normal part of relationships, and it’s important to learn how to disagree in a way that still allows you to feel secure in your future together.

Tango's Take 🔮

No one likes fighting, but it’s a natural part of any relationship. We’re all individuals first and foremost, so it makes sense that we won’t always agree with each other. Our in-house clinical psychologist, Dr. Rothman, provides some advice for those who are wondering if they’re fighting too much below:

“It all depends on what you mean by “fighting” and how comfortable you are with conflict. Partners who are highly comfortable with conflict and who have similar communication styles might not find their frequent arguments to be problematic. If frequent fighting is a problem in your relationship that you wish to address, consider where it might be coming from.

Arguments that are happening frequently signal that there’s probably something going on in the relationship that needs to be examined or changed. Try to detect patterns–when do they happen? How do they start and progress? Once you do, bring them up with your partner, open-mindedly and curiously when you are NOT upset or angry–something like: “I noticed we keep fighting about X when Y happens. Let’s figure this out.”

Not all fighting comes from something being “wrong” in the relationship. Disagreements that are happening more and more frequently might be a natural result of change in the relationship. For example, couples who are newly cohabiting or are new parents often report increases in disagreements and arguments. Change can increase stress and stress can negatively impact our ability to communicate effectively. Frequent fighting can also result from things that are unrelated to the relationship–if your partner loses their job, for example, they’re probably going to be feeling a lot more stressed than usual which can impact the relationship directly or indirectly. If this is the case for you, then it will be extra important to support each other through your respective or shared stress. That can take the edge off!”

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