It is almost inevitable. You and your girlfriend won’t see eye-to-eye on every issue. Maybe she thinks you’re spending too much time with friends and not enough one-on-one time with her. Or it could be that she thinks you don’t go out on enough dates together.
Though the reasons and circumstances change, it is almost certain that you and your girlfriend will run into areas of disagreement. You can’t necessarily control the fact that in a relationship there are, at times, differences of opinion.
You can, however, control how you deal with your dispute.
Quality communication is important.
Often times disputes arise do to a lack of quality communication. It could be that one or both of you have not fully explained your position, assuming the other one will intuitively know what you mean.
While you might think that your partner, especially if you’ve been together for a long time, can read your mind, it is best to be as clear as possible from the outset.
It may not seem practical or feel comfortable, but stating your feelings and thoughts clearly can help to avoid poor assumptions or miscommunication.
It is also important not to let emotions run too high in a heated debate. When emotions start to take over, the conversation can get way off topic and vindictive.
It is important have a clear head when resolving disputes. I suggest you always cool off and resume the conversation once the heat has been dialed down.
Pick your battles.
It is important for the harmony of any relationship to know when to take a stand and when to just go with the flow.
As individuals, we often feel that we know best or we want things to go our way. But as a person in a relationship, you have now turned a one-way street in to a two-way.
It is important to remember that both her needs and your needs are important, as well as your feelings and thoughts on the dispute. That being said, it is important to find a balance between which side wins and this can largely be done by choosing your battles.
For example, your girlfriend may feel like you haven’t been spending enough one- on-one time with each other lately. At the same time, your buddies want to do something with you the same evening.
It would be most wise to spend time with her and explain to your friends you will catch up with them at a future date. With this example it is important that you are honest with your girlfriend as well as your friends.
Explain to her that you want to spend time with her and that you’ll catch up with your friends another time. Explain to your friends that while your relationship with them is important, yours with your girlfriend is too.
It is important to remember she too gives up on seeing her friends for you sometimes, so you must return the gesture.
It is also important not to let things become too one-sided. If the balance is tipped too far in one direction, there is bound to be some unhappiness.
Remember that guys and girls are different.
I know this seems like common sense, but things like this are often overlooked or taken for granted. Men and women are different and that is okay; they are supposed to be.
It is important to remember that no matter how many times you and her have seen eye-to-eye, there are going to be times when male and female perspectives clash.
I’ve found that it is best to keep an open mind and open heart about things that your girlfriend likes to do, even if it seems girly or just something boring to you.
If you want her to sit next to you on a Sunday and watch the big game, you should also devote time to doing something she likes, like going for a walk, or watching a romantic chick flick.
In this same vein, it is important to remember that men and women will argue about different things and in different ways.
While there is no exact formula for resolving a dispute in a win-win manner, I believe this option should always be the first attempted.
At the end of the day, I think it’s important to not remember who wins an argument, but that you two still make each other happy.