Something Taboo

My friend and I have been talking about his decision to snoop and what it means for the relationship.

That’s the art of communication though. You need to learn how to communicate with that person in particular. If you’re consistently getting it wrong (them reacting negatively causing more trouble) then you aren’t asking the right questions and likely, you have made another poor choice in mate since they’re contributing poorly to the situation too (by reacting negatively instead of trying to problem solve). If they freak out when you try to discuss an issue, then the simplest thing to do next is ASK how they’d like to discuss such issues in the future. If you’re rubbing them wrong discussing something that NEEDS to be discussed, find out a better way, and the only person that can help you with that mystery is them.

If you can’t have a conversation about things then you will always fail. I promise.

The word confrontation doesn’t have to be a negative one. People assume that calling out an issue is a negative experience because of the way it makes them feel. But just because you’re uncomfortable about it doesn’t mean it doesn’t need to be talked about. You follow me? You just need to find ways to be “heard”. And that’s where compatibility comes in too. Some people respond to tough love, others don’t. Some people need a hand holding and coaxing when talking things thru, others need it like a bandage being ripped off, straight and to the point. These methods should be something you discuss with a new partner.

For example. My SO and I have seen firsthand his brothers and their wives deal with conflict. We’ll all be hanging out in a group, the wife of one, will not like something the husband does. She barks some sarcastic thing at him in front of all of us which in turn has a negative reaction from him as he’s embarrassed and tries to show off and be macho in retaliation. A reaction that she didn’t want in the first place. And then trouble ensues. What should have happened is her pulling him aside, out of earshot of everyone else, and mentioned the issue, to either resolve on the spot or to discuss later.

We actively discussed what we saw wrong with that example and have agreed to do just that, pull each other aside, and say, “hey, you know what, XYZ bothers me, how do you want to address that?” While we might have a different approach in handling the issue, we’ve come to an preconceived agreement that A. we won’t embarrass the other by calling each other out in front of everyone. and B. we’ll address it later, when the time and place are right and C. establish that XYZ is a problem for the other person.

If it comes down to “hey, I don’t like how XYZ went down” then the followup would be “Ok, I respect that’s how you feel, how would you like to see it go next time?” And come to some agreement on how it will go.

While this example isn’t the same as your experience, its about communication. It doesn’t work all the time, but for the most part, its helped to avoid a lot of unnecessary drama and in turn we’ve each learned something valuable about our partner. This+That=negative consequences and THIS+THAT=a much better situation. And now we know, better ways to communicate with each other in particular types of situations.