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We had an argument

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Fallen posted 8/14/2013 21:30 PM

We argued last night and it was ok. I know that may seem insignificant, but if you're in a conflict avoidant marriage, you'll understand why it's not insignificant.

My H and I never argued really- or when we did, he'd just back down to smooth things over. It caused a lot of resentment through the years and left us with unresolved anger. We worked on that stuff after the A- both of us had to learn how to communicate what we were feeling and what we needed. Part of doing that was learning how to disagree without making it personal. The biggest issue I had to overcome was defensiveness and that was hard because I always felt judged and like I was worthless if we disagreed. That was my problem, not his. Once I embraced the communication part of it and engaged with my H in honest discussion, the need to be right diminished.

So the icon for this thread is correct- it's a smile because learning how to fight with each other is a good thing. When the pain of the betrayal is still so new and you're struggling just to deal with that, this might not be something you can think about. But as you heal and if both of you are invested in recovering together, it's important.

Disagreeing in a healthy way and still honoring each other's feelings is necessary for a life-long reconciliation. It's been 10 years since I made the worst decisions of my life. I broke my husband's heart when I cheated. But together we put the pieces of our marriage back together and we're 10 years out, happy and fully reconciled. Just wanted to offer some hope today.

Wishing you peace and healing.

unfound posted 8/14/2013 21:36 PM

Hey Fallen!!

We argued last night and it was ok.


It seems like such an easy concept, but it can be so so hard. You rock my friend.

AFrayedKnot posted 8/14/2013 21:36 PM

Thank You for the hope!!!

Wonderingwhy11 posted 8/14/2013 23:42 PM

Great!!! That is progress and the start to rebuilding your marriage. In MC today we talked about conflict avoidance and how we used to handle conflict and how now I do not back down or avoid subjects and he is working on listening and it is ok to compromise. Isn't a great feeling to argue, resolve the argument and feel like it is all ok?

Wonderingwhy11 posted 8/14/2013 23:42 PM

Great!!! That is progress and the start to rebuilding your marriage. In MC today we talked about conflict avoidance and how we used to handle conflict and how now I do not back down or avoid subjects and he is working on listening and it is ok to compromise. Isn't a great feeling to argue, resolve the argument and feel like it is all ok?

Wonderingwhy11 posted 8/14/2013 23:42 PM

Great!!! That is progress and the start to rebuilding your marriage. In MC today we talked about conflict avoidance and how we used to handle conflict and how now I do not back down or avoid subjects and he is working on listening and it is ok to compromise. Isn't a great feeling to argue, resolve the argument and feel like it is all ok?

authenticnow posted 8/15/2013 05:12 AM

Fallen,

This was HUGE for us. Our arguments now usually end with a good feeling, because all that communicating leads us to better understanding .

Thanks for sharing the hope!

AN

SecondHelping posted 8/15/2013 06:25 AM

We are just learning this with our MC. We used to me just like you.

He is teaching us to 'Mirror' during an argument. Do you use this technique?

sisoon posted 8/15/2013 09:29 AM

The biggest issue I had to overcome was defensiveness and that was hard because I always felt judged and like I was worthless if we disagreed.

True for my W, too. It's really hard to deal with (for both partners), but, boy, life is better for us, too, when we both speak up for ourselves.

SadFlower posted 8/15/2013 09:56 AM

This is something my FWH and I need to work on, too. We are both very conflict-avoidant. I tend to get defensive when issues do come up, while he tends to stonewall. We're working on better ways of communicating!

letitout posted 8/15/2013 09:59 AM

My H and I never argued really- or when we did, he'd just back down to smooth things over. It caused a lot of resentment through the years and left us with unresolved anger. We worked on that stuff after the A- both of us had to learn how to communicate what we were feeling and what we needed. Part of doing that was learning how to disagree without making it personal. The biggest issue I had to overcome was defensiveness and that was hard because I always felt judged and like I was worthless if we disagreed. That was my problem, not his.

My H and I are just like you and we argued last night and it was a disaster because of it. It was so bad that it ended up with the D word thrown in and that is not what we want.

You give me hope that everything will be ok if we just keep working on it. We are muddling through our M ourselves because we can't afford a can of beans let alone a MC. But we are finally talking and that is a start even though it ends up badly sometimes for now. Other times it's ok. We are very guarded when we talk so not to destroy the fragile lines of communication.

SurprisinglyOkay posted 8/15/2013 20:50 PM

Fallen posted 8/15/2013 22:35 PM

We didn't use the mirror technique, exactly. I was the one who didn't think about what he was saying. He heard me, but I tended to shut down when my H told me how he felt because I had no ability to handle criticism. So we didn't exactly repeat back to each other what the other person said, but I did slow my roll enough to actually process what he was expressing rather than just reacting irrationally.

It's made such a difference to just listen to each other- and if I don't understand something he's said, I ask. He seemed surprised the other night when I didn't react badly to his feelings. And it was a good talk. He was right- I was wrong, and owning it when you're wrong is important too... another hard lesson brought to us by the work we did after my A.

letitout- a lot of the discussion we had in the early days, especially about the A, was text/instant message. It gave me enough space to feel safe talking about things and it made us both think about what we were saying to each other. That doesn't work for everyone but it really helped us.

brainless twit posted 8/15/2013 23:04 PM

I just posted a thread about something similar - we had an argument that ended well for the first time in 16 years together. Hooray for both of us!!!!! :)

Fallen posted 8/15/2013 23:42 PM

It's something funny that we think arguing is a good thing.

BTW, hi unfound!!

still-living posted 8/16/2013 07:32 AM

It's something funny that we think arguing is a good thing.

My wife was "Standing with fists" and I loved it. It was the weirdest thing. I just wanted to hug her.

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