For some couples fighting is the fire that keeps their relationships alive. It lets them know the other cares. Many are determined to win a battle that never seems to be over. In addition, they try to right the wrongs they have experienced in the past with someone new. Unfortunately, this kind of behavior is doomed to failure. When we bring baggage from a former relationship into the present, all new relationships simply become a continuation of the past.
What People Get Out of Fighting
It is important to understand why couples (who are now parted) keep fighting. For some fighting is a fire that keeps their relationships alive. It lets them know the other cares, things aren’t really over, and sparks still fly between them. Although consciously, they do not want to be together, fighting can keep these couples bonded, causing them to think about each other a great deal, determined to win the power struggle.. Many couples keep these power struggles going long after they have parted.
For them it is a way to keep the relationship from ending, (even though they may be divorced, or living apart).
Anger escalates and fighting can easily become a habit, something we fall into automatically and instinctively. This habit can be hard to get out of, and soon we find ourselves fighting not only with our ex partner, but with children, friends and new relationships.
Needless to say, fighting prevents real communication from developing. It is a way of threatening or blaming the other. Rather than really addressing issues, it causes a situation to remain stuck.
Without a good fight, a relationship is over,” says Mary, a twenty six year old administrative assistant. “The lights have gone off between us. It’s a sign my partner no longer cares.”
Mary, who was recently divorced and is now in another choppy relationship feels that eventually she’ll marry a man with whom she can fight – and survive the storms. ” I respect a guy who I can fight with, who can take me as I am.”
For Mary being angry, fighting and winning has became her identity. Without it, she no longer knows who she truly is. She does not see price she is paying for this kind of relationship or what toll it takes on all concerned.
Unfortunately, the anger many individuals live with on a daily basis can become crystallized into their identity. Once this identity becomes habitual, the individuals soon have no idea who they would be without it. Needless to say, this blocks out much of the happiness, flexibility, communication and intimacy they desire.
“I’m not letting her walk all over me,” Roger would balk whenever his ex wife expressed her needs to him now, or brought up any issue. Rather than listening to what she had to say, he immediately took it as criticism. “She’s trying to tell me I’m inadequate,” he would declare. The war was on. What started as a conversation, turned into a power struggle. From Roger’s point of view, his very manhood was at stake.
However, as long as any of us hold onto our anger and continue fighting, there is no hope of working the problems through, or even truly understanding what is really going on. Roger could not pause and realize that his former wife’s needs and feelings had nothing to do with him. He was determined to take whatever she said or did personally and keep feeling badly about himself. These are many consequences when we cling to anger and allow it to turn into our sense of who we are.
Beyond that, it’s impossible not to receive the fruits of what you have put forth. “As you sow, so shall you reap,” is an immutable law of living. Although we may justify all kinds of behavior it is absolutely inevitable that we will experience the consequences of our thoughts, actions and deeds. Depression arises, hopelessness and the inability to love again.
There are many steps involved in letting go of anger and stopping the fighting in our relationships. The very first step is to realize that anger is a toxin. It is not a source of strength or power, but can become an addiction, a substitute for true power and wisdom, something that hinders our well-being and stops our life from going forward.
Anger is ruthless in the course it takes, disrupting our body, mind and spirit. It hardens our hearts and causes misjudgment and confusion of all kinds.
There are definite steps we can take to undo anger, dissolve this toxin from our lives and be able to start really new. In order to begin a new chapter and to build a positive relationship both with ourselves and others, it is necessary to begin this process.
Here are a few steps one can take to begin. They are taken from The Anger Diet which offers one step a day for thirty days. These following guidelines are simple, but powerful.. Why not try them today and see.
Putting An End To The War
1)Stop Blaming – It is absolutely pointless for you to blame yourself or the other. Blame stops you from seeing the truth. While we are engaged in pointing a finger, and making the other feel guilty, we cannot see what is really going on. Blame is a way to keep the fight alive. TAKE A VACATION FROM BLAME FOR ONE DAY. Instead of thinking of all the ways the person has hurt you keep your eyes open to watch how you may be stoking the fires. Focus upon what the person has done for you, instead. See the affect in your own life.
2)Realize The Price You Are Paying For These Fights. Unless we truly realize the terribly toll fighting is taking on us, we will continue it automatically. In order to get off of this merry-go-round, we must honestly take note of the consequences each fight brings, what it is doing to our body, mind and spirit. Then ask do I truly want this? Haven’t I suffered enough? Why not stop it today?
3) Know There Is A Better Way – You have to become aware that there is a better way to be in a relationship, and that this better way is possible for you too. This is the time to expand your view. Define success as being happy and healthy and having what you truly want. Realize that there are tools and techniques you can learn fairly easily which will make a positive relationship also possible for you.
4)Build A Strong Sense of Self-Worth – Build a strong sense of self worth. The basis of all good relationships is a feeling of worthiness, a desire to honor, gift and pleasure yourself,and to do the same for the other. Choose this kind of relationship and let go of all that opposes it.
As we have the courage to let go of anger, not only does our health improve, but soon we notice many kinds of wonderful, new people and experiences entering our lives. We attract what we focus upon. When we focus upon well-being, forgiveness and love, that is what our lives will be like.
“One word frees us from all the weight and pain of life.
That word is love.”