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The Brangelina breakup is all over the news. A lot of us defined our hopes of love by this star studded romance. Yet, even this too has come to an end. As sad as it is, what can we learn from this? From the news speculation, it can be gathered that the two supposed reasons are Brad Pitt’s parenting methods and his rumored affair with a co-star. Aren’t these some of the reasons that most marriages break apart for?
Disagreement in Brangelina and other marriages:
We start out or marriages and commitments with strong ideas. We feel our partner and we should be together in everything. However, soon, we substitute the ‘together’ with ‘similar’ and begin to become intolerant of differences. It becomes a battle of finding out who is right and who isn’t, rather than what works. Perhaps this is what happened with Brangelina? They left their previous relationships to be with each other and surely must have seen something in each other. However, disagreements got in the way and ended the relationship.
Signs of disagreement-related strife:
When fights become more about proving your partner wrong, rather than finding a solution, you know there’s trouble brewing. The first step in this case is to acknowledge that something is wrong. Many couples don’t do it until it’s too late. Once you have acknowledged that something is going wrong, talk to your partner about it. Do this at a time when you both are calm. Gently tell them that you feel there are some issues that will need work. But a word of caution here: you cannot eliminate disagreements. As two different people, you are likely to differ on some opinions. However, disagreements can be healthy if used well to arrive at a workable solution.
What you can do:
You can work on your communication patterns in order to talk more healthily to your partner. Start using ‘I statements’ so that you take accountability. For example, instead of saying “your coming home late is wrong”, you can say “I get angry when you come home late”. This helps you to see your role in what’s happening and therefore, gives you something to work on. Another good tactic is to keep the positive to negative ratio as 3:1. For each negative thing you say to your partner, make sure you are saying three positive (and genuine) things.
If you feel that you cannot work on the relationship by yourself, you can talk to an expert counselor here.