When you’ve just had a disagreement or a “not so pleasant” interaction with your partner, are you quick to “nip it in the bud” and say you’re sorry or communicate about it? I know I don’t always! Sometimes the negative emotions are flaring and it seems on default that I’d rather stew about it in my head, create a list to defend myself, and start having a self-pity or bitter party. Obviously, these reactions are ineffective and I’m left feeling worst and nothing has been achieved. Instead, why don’t I just quickly strive to remedy the miscommunication or hurt feelings I have or he has? (This is assuming neither party doesn’t need processing time). An example of this occurred last week. The funny thing is, I don’t even remember what the argument was between Daniel and I. All I recall is us going our separate ways and Daniel was off to bed without a goodnight. “How dare him?” I thought. “I thought we committed to never go to bed upset?” Thereafter I proceeded to stew about our argument. Shortly afterwards, I climbed into bed not saying a word, and stayed as far away on my side of the bed as possible. (Tell me, can’t you relate??) As we’re both lying there stewing, I feel Daniel throw his hand over my body (supposedly as as a loving gesture), and say, “I’m sorry.” At first I wanted to laugh because his arm felt like a dead log, but more importantly, I was impressed that he “nipped it in the bud” and initiated a peace offering… even though he didn’t want to! You read it right; he didn’t want to, but he did knowing that it was the right thing to do. Why go to bed upset and have poor sleep? Why miss out on precious cuddle time because we wanted to hold onto negative emotions that could be easily and quickly washed away with an “I love you,” “I’m sorry,” a hug, and/or kiss? In response, I apologized too, we reflected on the situation, kissed, and went to bed (peacefully!!) I’m so glad we’re heading in this direction following arguments compared to in the past when we both would let so much time pass until one of us initiated a discussion.
What role do you playing during these occurrences? What has worked for you and what hasn’t that you’d like to share?