No matter if you’ve been a couple for a few weeks or are happily married for years, you will have arguments and fights from time to time. While these are perfectly normal, sometimes it can feel like they come out of nowhere and can start to pile on. In some cases, it may seem like your partner is always the one coming after you, which can make it feel like you’re a source of anger and frustration.
For some couples, the arguments can be mostly one sided. If that is the case, and you are on the receiving end, then you will, of course, be wondering how you can put a stop to it. No one enjoys fighting with their SO (we hope), and if your partner is starting them regularly, it can feel like you’re constantly under attack.
So what can you do in that situation? While each couple is different, there are a few ways to help minimize the issue.
Talk it Out
If your SO is always arguing with you or starting a fight, then the best thing you can do is ask him or her why. To avoid escalating things, don’t do this in the middle of a fight, but rather bring it up when both of you are on even terms.
The best way to broach the subject is not to antagonize your partner by asking in a demeaning tone, but rather bring it up as it affects you. Tell your SO that you feel like you’re on the receiving end of a lot of hostility, and make sure that he or she understands the impact it has.
Once you have expressed your feelings, then ask why he or she does this on a regular basis. From our experience, three things could be going on underneath the surface. What’s important to keep in mind, however, is that these are merely suggestions, so don’t assume that your SO will fall into one of these categories.
In many cases, your partner could be starting fights because:
A) he or she doesn’t realize that they are “fights” and doesn’t feel the same way about them as you do;
B) other things are going in your SO’s life that are affecting how he or she treats you; or
C) your partner is doing it intentionally as a way to manipulate or control you.
What’s important to note is if C is the case, you are in a toxic relationship, and you should get out immediately. Also, if your partner is trying to manipulate you, then he or she will most likely not admit to it, so you will have to do some extra digging.
Not On the Same Page
In some cases, your SO may be starting arguments or fights because that is how he or she tries to resolve problems, or that is how he or she was raised. People that live in families that argue a lot tend to do the same thing without even realizing it because it seems normal to them.
If that is the case, let your partner know how it affects you and tell him or her that you would like it to stop. If it is ingrained in your SO, then it will take time, so you might have to be patient with the results.
Ideally, your partner will try to stop after realizing the effect it has, so be sure to let him or her know if it starts happening again so that he or she can remedy the situation.
In this instance, it will take time, effort, and patience on both of your parts to make it work and to correct the issue.
If your SO is having problems elsewhere in life, then he or she may take it out on you without any provocation. If that is the case, then it’s important that both of you understand what is triggering these emotions so that you can work together to solve the problem.
Ideally, your partner should come to you with his or her problems so that you can talk them out and move past them. Even if it’s relating to something that you have no knowledge of (like a problem at work), let your partner know that you can be there to listen and comfort him or her. Even if you can’t offer advice, you can still be a shoulder to lean on.
Hopefully, talking about it that way will inspire your SO to stop taking his or her anger out on you, but rather use you as a resource to feel better. That way, you are increasing the bond between you and turning a negative situation into a positive.
As we mentioned, if your partner is arguing or fighting with you intentionally, odds are that he or she won’t admit it because it will make it seem like he or she is an a-hole. Thus, if this is the case, you will have to approach it carefully so as to determine your SO’s true motives.
One way that you can do this is not to react if your partner starts a fight. If he or she begins to argue or berate you for something, try to stay as calm and restrained as possible.
If the source of the anger is genuine (i.e. not manipulative), then your partner should start to cool down quickly and apologize. However, if he or she is doing it on purpose, then your stone face will only prompt him or her to increase the hostility as a way to get you to react.
If you do determine that your SO is trying to manipulate you, then that is a bad sign. In that case, you should leave as soon as possible as it will only get worse down the road.