Arguing: Does a Body Good?
By Dr. Joe and Cindi Ferrini
“We never argue.”
These friends were three years into their marriage. And we, as newlyweds, were shocked.
We’d already had a good deal of conflict—from little stuff, like one of us not being on time, to conflicts taking days to work out.
How does one never argue?
The thought of it made us wonder: Could one of them be frustrated from constantly compromising to avoid conflict?
And if one person is getting their way all the time, might the other spouse feel manipulated, or recognize a lack of healthy confrontation?
Ironically, as the two of us slowly learned to fight fair, we realized conflict actually moved us closer to healthiness. We’d had productive conversation. We understood a lot about ourselves, each other, our marriage, our expectations. And we learned to better serve each other for the long haul.
Conflict was a fantastic instructor about listening well and not interrupting. Or sticking to the topic when we want to bring everything up! Or never discussing divorce, so that working things out (and truly communicating) was our only option.
Arguing also helped tame those highly-charged words (“I’m furious!”) we can easily choose to prove a point. And allowing the other to talk first helped us communicate, “I’m listening. I want to understand.”
When we learn to maneuver through the little conflicts, it prepares us better for when the bigger ones pop up.
Conflict isn’t all bad. In fact, it could be one of your marriage’s best professors.
The good stuff: Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. (Colossians 3:13-14)
Action points: Consider some of the conflict-causing buttons pushed in your marriage. Find a time to discuss one of them and some ways you can lessen the conflict by working through it. Listen well. Speak kindly. Learn something new!
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