Every relationship has its ups and downs, and most couples who are together for any length of time find that they will argue at some point. Different couples have different styles of arguing. Some couples disagree intensely and quietly. Others talk things out in an annoyed but controlled pace. A few lean towards raised voices and emotional outbursts. Any of these ways of arguing aren't inherently unhealthy, but there are signs you are fighting too much with your significant other.
It can be hard to gauge your own relationship. You're inside the cocoon of something private you've created with another person, and even when you're both struggling, it can be hard to see clearly what is going on. Or, you might not want to see. It's difficult to admit that something so important to you isn't working well. Sometimes you have to take a step back and lay out the cold hard facts to yourself to really access your relationship status. Some people find that journaling helps illuminate patterns or problems, some turn to couple's therapy for an outside intervention. Whatever path you take, the first and most important step is to realize there is a problem. Read through these red flags and see if you relate a little too much for comfort.
1. You Often Fight Over Text
Arguing by itself is hard – you're emotional, stressed, trying to be a good listener when your brain is just telling you how wrong the other person is. But arguing over text makes it worse. Without facial expressions, silences, the opportunity to touch each other, or the ability to see how your words are impacting your person, things can go really wrong.
2. Screaming Is The Default Mode
Raising your voice occasionally during an argument is normal. Screaming every time you two are working out problems is not. Yelling often signals communication breakdown, and it's unlikely anyone is feeling heard or that an issue is getting worked out.
3. You Feel Like It's You Against Them
In any relationship there are going to be patches where you feel adrift from your partner to some degree. As Oprah notes, constant fighting can cause a rift between the two of you so that internally, you no longer view yourself as part of a couple, but as an adversary who has to prove that you are right.
4. You Fight Weekly
If you are fighting once a week, that's a sign that your relationship is heading toward a bad place, or is already there.
5. You Don't Know What You're Fighting About
Are you in the middle of making your point when you suddenly forget why you care so much? Do you strain to remember what was making you so angry yesterday? Are you feeling overall unhappy but not exactly sure why? Those are all tell-tale signs that you are fighting too much. Arguing without purpose and without pause is a red flag that your relationship needs overhauling.
6. You Fight In Front Of Other People
No one wants to be that couple that makes everyone cringe in discomfort because you're fighting in public, but it happens. If it happens more than once, or you let particularly personal zingers fly, that's a big ole signal that things are going sour.
7. You Don't Look Forward To Seeing Your Partner
That old magic is gone, and replaced with the relationship killer: indifference. According to Psychology Today, constant fighting can cause emotional dissociation. If you don't look forward to seeing your partner, if you feel bored and disconnected when you are together, if you find yourself even avoiding being close – take notice. Something's really off and it's demanding to be addressed.