Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach

How to Argue With Someone You Care About

Arguing isn’t a sign that someone is bad for you. Arguments are an unavoidable cost of any close relationship. But just because you need to accept some amount of bickering, doesn’t mean you need to accept the unkind words that might come with them. 

The sad truth is, many of us aren’t brought up to argue in a healthy way.

These people have been taught that disagreements are about proving a point. And they’ll often resort to name-calling, bringing up the other person’s insecurities, or deflecting the issue by dredging up past mistakes to drive that point home.

Whatever it takes to be right and win. 

You obviously don’t need to put up with this. But you also shouldn’t walk away and give up on someone you care about so easily. 

So what should you do?

Be kind to them and see if they can meet your standards.

“What you just said is very hurtful. I’m trying to understand how you feel, but instead of doing the same for me, you’re being really mean.”

“Look, I really care about you. And I know you feel the same about me. But how you’re talking to me right now really doesn’t make me feel that way.”

Give someone the chance to rise to the occasion.

You’ll be surprised how many people will meet you there. And if they don’t, you can move on knowing that you tried your hardest.

By Jeroen Elsing
Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach