Why it’s okay to argue
BOASTING that you’ve “never had a fight” with your partner actually isn’t that great - turns out having an argument is good for your relationship.
EVER been out for dinner with one of those smug couples who smile serenely at one another and insist they never argue?
Next time, reply: “Oh, that’s such a shame. I’m so sad to hear it.”
Research shows couples who argue are often happier than those who never experience conflict.
While constant fights are a sign things are going wrong, avoiding conflict and bottling up feelings can lead to even greater stress in the long run.
So is arguing about issues head-on the secret to happy and long-lasting love?
Relationship coach Sunday Gilchrist says so and believes regular arguments are actually good for our love life.
From improving your sex life to boosting your confidence, here we explain the reasons why bickering could be the best thing for us.
RELIEVES STRESS AND ANXIETY
The “put up and shut up” approach is not always the best when it comes to your partner.
Feelings and words you suppress to “not cause an argument” can bring more tension to your body, mind and life than just having it out in a row.
Over time, bottled up feelings can create anxiety and depression – not healthy for your stress levels. The fight or flight response kicks in when your body tries to deal with pent-up emotions, while stress hormones can trigger headaches and sleeplessness. Brave that brief argument to relieve long-term tension.
When you argue and come out the other side, it shows you can compromise and get through things together, even when things are tense. Agreeing to disagree can feel powerful for both sides and often builds trust because neither of you could have reached a conclusion without the other.
A healthy argument can bring passion by raising energy levels between a couple. And when your partner sticks by you afterwards, you receive a big boost in confidence. But don’t keep arguing about the same thing. This is the sign of an unresolved disagreement which needs addressing.
Arguing shows your partner that you care about the relationship. Being honest and speaking out about something which isn’t working isn’t easy, but if the relationship didn’t matter to you, you wouldn’t have the drive to raise the issue in the first place.
It’s important to argue fairly, listen to each other and make changes – together.
Owning your feelings and not blaming your partner for how you feel is the best way to be heard.
Saying “I feel that when ... ” is far better than starting off a discussion with “When you did” – and less damaging to the relationship.
Research shows that the more times you bounce back from an argument, the stronger your relationship can become.
Each meltdown you have together forges a stronger bond because you know you can survive bad situations and stressful events with each other and come out the other side.
You’ll feel more like a team who can tackle things together.
Arguments give couples the chance to see one another as their true selves and make each person realise they still love the other – no matter what.
STIMULATES SEX LIFE
Make-up sex isn’t just a myth. Arguments often cause raised blood pressure, heightened emotions and – if resolved – heightened libido, often resulting in more passionate, exciting sex.
Having sex after a row also releases the feel-good hormone oxytocin while it also helps with moving on after a disagreement, resetting the situation to neutral.
Being honest and learning to argue fairly can bring numerous health benefits. Pent-up anger delivers cortisol and adrenaline to the body leading to digestive problems and even substance abuse as a way of coping. This can range from anything from chocolate binges to turning to a bottle (or two) of wine.
Speaking up about what’s not working clears adrenaline and stress hormone cortisol from the body and releases endorphins, making you happier and healthier.
This article originally appeared on The Sun.
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