Marriage Mantras: It’s Not Always Sunshine & Rainbows

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(although sometimes it is)

Unless you’re some kinds of freaks of nature, it’s unlikely that you and your spouse will agree on everything. Disagreements are a fact of life but how you handle them is vital to your continued happiness. One of the things we learnt very quickly was that throwing phrases like “You ALWAYS do this…” or “You NEVER do that…” not only never resolved anything, but only succeeded in hurting the other person much more.

We’ve since made a pact to never use those phrases with each other and, as a result, are able to have much more constructive discussions rather than ending up throwing mindless insults at each other.

3. Its not always sunshine and rainbows

It’s important to remember that although arguments are a fact of married life you must never over-inflate your frustration by bringing other issues into the conversation. You must learn to accept your partner’s flaws and not use them as petty ammunition. Once you’ve resolved any issues you need to forgive each other immediately. Look forwards to the future rather than carrying any weight from the past.

Gareth and I actually handle conflict very differently. I hate any bad feelings and I like to get things resolved as fast as possible. I’m happy to go all hell for leather and bash things out to try fix them quickly, whereas he likes to take his time to think things over before talking them through. I can see why his way of handling disagreements might be the more mature option, but in the heat of the moment I always just want to say my piece!

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The fact that our ‘argument styles’ are at odds with each other did take us a while to figure out. Yet since realising this, we both make a much more concerted effort to respect each other’s feelings. In turn, we now have debates that are more constructive and thought out rather than shouting matches that do nothing but get us further upset and frustrated.

Accept that you will argue, realise that you may each handle this differently and make a concerted effort to work together in figuring out what the best way to resolve things might be. In the long run this will help you resolve conflicts in a way that is as painless as possible.

By working together, you’ll be able to have much less stressful and hurtful disagreements, ones that actually resolve issues rather than inflating them.

This is part three of my ten part Marriage Mantras series. Go ahead and catch up on any earlier episodes you might have missed.

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10 comments

  1. Argh, I’m a shouter too Kat – and it always used to wind me up so much that Gareth wouldn’t scream back at me as he just doesn’t ‘do’ arguments. I’ve learned to chill out a bit on some of his stuff whereas he’s not afraid to shout a bit as it calms me down much quicker…and we usually end up in fits of giggles instead.

  2. I am ranter and shouter and the hubby a thinker too. We celebrated seven years of marriage yesterday and he still bought tears to my eyes at what he had written in my card. We have had a few arguments over those years and I guess the biggest thing I have learnt is too slow down and think about what I am going to say. Not as easy as I thought but hey I am a work in progress.

  3. I’m only just getting round to reading this series, Kat! This is great and I would totally agree that you will argue, it just needs to be about things that matter. When I moved in with my boyfriend my brother text me saying ‘Good luck. You’ll argue but it will be great’ And it I think about that all the time. It keeps me grounded about what to get stressed about and what to not bother about.

  4. Bianca

    This is great, Kat! Me and my boyfriend always think about living together and marry some day, although we are really young (I’m 23 and he’s 22) and our relationship is also not so long. But we just feel in our hearts that it have to be, we’re meant for each other and I never felt like this before. I’m really excited about it, the only thing that freaks me out is this: arguments. I always heard histories about people that were amazing while dating, but when they started living together, it just doesn’t worked. So everytime we start talking about it, i take a step back. I think I need to be more confident and also learn better how to deal with disagreements.
    However, this serie is brilliant and you blog it just outstanding! Congrats and kisses from Brazil. 🙂

  5. Sarah Gibbon

    I love this. It’s nice to have time to reflect on how me and my soon to be husband react to situations. Our major problem is we both like to have the last word, haha! After 18months living together we’ve figured it out a lot better, quite often a little well timed humour helps for a start!

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