Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Mature couples don't fight dirty

Mature couples don't fight dirty

By Bob Garon
TODAY Newspaper
Tuesday, February 22, 2005 12:43 AM

Conflict should come as no surprise in any relationship, whether it be of a business or intimate kind. Conflict on the job has always been and will always will be. So, too, will there be discord in personal relationships. This is so obvious that it is safe to say that a person’s success at work and in his personal life will depend, to a great extent, on his ability to deal with inevitable conflict.

On the personal level, many experts believe that it isn’t how many conflicts one has that is important, but how good one is at handling them. Less skillful persons may have less conflicts, but their inability to deal with them might have devastating results. Successful couples, for instance, may have more conflicts but know how to contend with them.

Don’t think that happy couples are spared their share of conflicts. They are not, but added to their love for each other is a maturity that allows them to tackle their discord in ways that let both partners to be satisfied with the outcome.

Love isn’t enough. Contrary to what lovers think, love does not conquer all. It needs the backing of a mature mind in order to survive the inevitable procession of conflicting situations that are part and parcel of any long- lasting relationship.

Couples in love who do not have the maturity to back them up will resort to fighting dirty. They will turn to anything, even what is foul, to gain advantages in conflict situations. Lies and deception are two of the more common weapons that those fighting dirty use to win. Intimidation is another. So is dredging up ugliness from the past that has nothing to do with the issues at hand.

Dirty fighting causes a severe loss of love when couples (or one partner) engage in it. This is so because dirty fighting is contrary to love. It’s hitting below the belt and it’s intended to hurt as well as to win points.

When partners curse each other and use every cutting word they can find when arguing, that kind of dirty fighting goes straight to the heart. It is seen as insincere, and sincerity is the corner stone of all love and of all successful human relationships for that matter.

When one turns to dirty fighting, it means that there is a willingness to use any method not only to win an argument, but to hurt in the process. If you don’t want to hurt your partner when you’re deeply in love, then you care little if you do so when love has fallen a great deal. This is why you will find that dirty fighting is common among couples whose relationship is on the decline. This is when the old saying “all is fair in love and war” applies, especially when lovers are at war with each other.


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