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Too Much Togetherness? Strategies to Avoid Relationship Woes in These Uncertain Times

Published January 13, 2021
Your relationship may be under more pressure than ever during this stressful time. It may be worth taking stock of your conflict dynamic and determining whether you’re able to navigate arguments in a safer and more supportive manner. Or, you may realize that divorce is your best option.

If you and your partner have argued more often in recent months, you’re not alone. For many couples across the country, the stress of sheltering in place, coupled with the stress of economic uncertainty, has paved the way for more disagreements and disputes. Relationships are under additional strain when both people are cooped up in their homes, forced to interact with one another much more than usual. For parents, life can seem particularly chaotic. So, if you are concerned that you’re arguing too often with your spouse, and you think a divorce may be on the horizon, it may be worth taking some time to step back and assess the situation before making any sudden moves. Sometimes, simply acknowledging the unprecedented circumstances we are in can put things back in perspective. Or, some reflection may make it even more clear why a divorce may be your best option.

Addressing the Underlying Dynamic

While it might seem that the topic of the dispute is important, the underlying stress and relationship dynamic is much more relevant. Whether you are arguing about chores, money, or political views, the way you argue has more of an impact on your relationship than these particular topics. So, take some time to observe yourself and your partner when you fight. Is one of you more vocal? Does one of you prefer to retreat and avoid confrontation? When you are not arguing, it may be worth taking some time to share your observations with each other so that you can address unhealthy patterns or behaviors that you can attempt to avoid during future disagreements.

Recognize the Physical Effects of Fighting

When we are arguing, our bodies tend to switch into a state of high alert and stress. Your heart rate and blood pressure may increase, leading to additional stress on the body over time. In fact, a 2016 study found that engaging in emotionally charged arguments could lead to the development of serious health conditions over time, especially for men. People who exhibited intense feelings of anger during marital disagreements were more likely to develop one or more cardiovascular issues over time, such as hypertension or chest pain. So, to counteract these negative consequences, relationship experts recommend maintaining eye contact with your partner during an argument and keeping your words and actions as constructive as possible. You can still disagree and argue, but it’s important to also make each other feel safe and supported as much as you can.

Acknowledging That it Might be Best to Move On

Sometimes, you and your spouse may realize that your relationship is beyond repair. Your efforts to reconnect or move forward together may not work, and that’s ok. A divorce may be the best way to forge new paths that allow you both to pursue your dreams. If you’d like to learn more about your divorce options in the Portland area, reach out to the skilled and compassionate legal team at Lee Tyler Family Law, P.C. today. Call (503) 233-8868 to get started with a dedicated divorce and family law attorney.

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