Why You're So Bad At Handling Conflict In Relationships, And What To Do About It

Dec 16, 2022


Are you someone who avoids confrontation at all costs? Do you struggle to express your feelings and needs in your relationships? If so, you're not alone. Many of us have a hard time handling conflict in our relationships, and it can lead to resentment, frustration, and disconnection. But the good news is that there are steps you can take to improve your conflict resolution skills and foster healthier, more fulfilling connections with the important people in your life. In this post, we'll explore some of the common reasons why you might be bad at handling conflict in relationships, and offer practical tips for overcoming those challenges and learning to navigate difficult conversations with grace and effectiveness. So, if you're ready to break the cycle of avoidance and start dealing with conflict in a healthier, more productive way, keep reading!

Conflict in relationships is something that most people struggle with at one time or another. It's natural for people to have different perspectives, needs, and desires, and when those differences come to a head, conflict can arise.

But why do some people handle conflict in relationships better than others? And what can you do if you're someone who struggles with this issue?

One reason why some people may be bad at handling conflict in relationships is that they avoid it altogether. They may fear confrontation, or they may be afraid of hurting their partner's feelings. As a result, they may bottle up their feelings and try to suppress their negative emotions.

But avoiding conflict doesn't make it go away. It can make things worse. When we don't address our conflicts head-on, resentment and bitterness can build up, leading to even more intense conflict.

Another reason some people may be bad at handling conflict in relationships is that they react to it in unhealthy ways. They may get defensive and start arguing, or they may try to shut down the conversation altogether. These reactions can escalate the conflict and make things even more difficult to resolve.

So what can you do if you struggle with handling conflict in relationships? 

Here are a few tips:

  1. Practice active listening. When you're in a conflict with your partner, it's important to listen to what they're saying. Try to understand their perspective, and don't interrupt them when they're speaking. By listening actively, you can better understand where your partner is coming from and find common ground.
  2. Use "I" statements. Instead of accusing your partner of something, try to express your feelings and needs. For example, instead of saying, "You never listen to me," you could say, "I feel like I'm not being heard when we talk." Using "I" statements can help to de-escalate the conflict and keep the conversation focused on your feelings rather than attacking your partner.
  3. Take a break if things get heated. If the conflict gets out of hand, it's okay to take a break and cool off. Let your partner know you need some time to think, and agree to return to the conversation when you're both calm. This can help to prevent things from getting out of control.
  4. Seek outside help if needed. If you're really struggling with conflict in your relationship, it may be helpful to seek the advice of a professional counsellor or therapist. They can help you learn more effective communication skills and find healthy ways to resolve conflicts.

You can avoid conflict in a relationship, but it won't solve anything.

Avoiding conflict in a relationship may seem like the easiest and most obvious solution, but it’s not. Avoiding conflict means you’re not communicating, being honest, being vulnerable, or being authentic. You aren’t owning your feelings or expressing them to your partner in a healthy way. Doing this over time can cause resentment and hurt feelings, leading to bigger problems.

And even if you try taking things into your own hands by avoiding confrontation altogether—that might work for a while (and maybe even longer than expected), but eventually, that tension will build up until it unexpectedly explodes on both of you.

Conflict is usually about more than just the thing you're arguing about.

We tend to believe that we're only arguing about the thing that's currently on our minds, but often, it's not just about that. Conflict is often about more than just the specific issue at hand—it can be about a bigger issue or an overall pattern in your relationship.

Avoiding conflict creates distance between you and your partner.

If you're avoiding conflict, it's probably because you're unsure how to handle it. This is natural; most of us didn't get much training to resolve conflict growing up. But the truth is that avoiding conflict only makes things worse. If you don't talk about the problems in your relationship, those problems aren't going away—in fact, they'll just grow and create even more distance between you and your partner over time.

Here are some ways that avoiding conflict can cause more distance between a couple:

  • It makes your partner feel ignored or misunderstood
  • It gives him or her less incentive to try harder at meeting your needs (since he or she doesn't know what those needs are)

If a fight damages your relationship, you don't have to pretend things are OK if they're not.

If a fight damages your relationship, you don’t have to pretend things are OK if they're not. Pretending can make the situation worse. You can get help from a professional or talk with friends and family who are there for support.

If you're in an abusive relationship and don't know where to get help, REACH US TO US contact Richard for the art of relationship program). Your partner won't be happy that you did this—but at least now he or she will know why you did it!

You'll fight with every new partner, no matter how great they are.

I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but if you're anything like me—and possibly many other humans—you will fight with your significant other. It's just how it is.

You and your partner are imperfect people, so there will be times when you disagree or things get heated. So it's essential that you learn how to handle conflict well in relationships so that it doesn't turn into something worse (like physical violence). This is true no matter who your partner is or how long you've been together: The first fight with each new partner will probably feel like the hardest yet. But with practice, any relationship can improve its ability to handle disagreements gracefully and respectfully (even if they happen more often than either person would like).

Mental health issues can make conflict harder to deal with.

  • Mental health issues can make it harder for you to deal with conflict. If you're experiencing anxiety or depression, staying calm is harder when something triggers negative feelings in your brain. That won't change just because you want it to! Your partner might feel like they have no control over what happens when they're trying to help solve a problem, and all they get is blame or anger coming back at them from their partner.*

As long as both of your mental health is good (and not too far off course), then this will likely be less of an issue than other problems we've discussed above—but it's still worth keeping in mind if either of you starts feeling stressed out by the arguments taking place between the two of you.

How you approach conflict makes a huge difference in how bad it is.

It's not just what you say but how you say it.

  • Approach conflict with the right attitude
  • Be open and honest
  • Listen to your partner's point of view
  • Don't take things personally; instead, be compassionate and understanding when your partner says something that makes you angry or frustrated (or both)

How much you fight doesn't tell you anything about the health of your relationship.

The amount of conflict in your relationship could be a better indicator of how healthy it is.

That's right: The frequency and severity of arguments don't necessarily tell you anything about the health of your relationship. The number of arguments you have isn't an accurate measure for determining whether or not something needs to be changed, nor does it show if a problem will persist in the future. It doesn't matter if you're having one fight per week or one per month—if those fights are minor disagreements that resolve themselves quickly and easily, there's no reason for concern. Are there major conflicts that leave both partners feeling hurt or angry afterwards? That may indicate deeper problems in communication between the two people involved in this particular conflict resolution process (and possibly others). In other words: How many times each day do people get into an argument with their partner? This question is irrelevant because nobody knows what constitutes "too much," anyway!

Conflict resolution isn't easy, but it's worth it in the long run.

Conflicts are inevitable in any relationship, and it can be challenging to resolve them. You may have to talk about the same thing repeatedly until you understand each other's points of view. You might also have to compromise on something important to you but less for your partner. However, these challenges are manageable if you're willing to work together and communicate effectively.

In addition, it's important not to expect your partner to change their opinion on a topic that is important to you just because they know how much it matters in the long run—and vice versa! Suppose one person feels strongly about something and the other doesn't feel quite as strongly about it. In that case, there shouldn't be any pressure put on either party for things between them both (and therefore also between all three) at least somewhat work out well enough when talking about those subjects.


Handling conflict in relationships isn't easy, but it's an important skill to develop. By practising active listening, using "I" statements, taking breaks when needed, and seeking outside help, you can improve your ability to handle conflict healthily and productively.


In conclusion, it's important to recognize and address the reasons why you may be struggling with conflict in relationships. Whether it's a lack of communication skills, a fear of vulnerability, or unresolved trauma from past experiences, there are steps you can take to improve your ability to handle conflict. These may include seeking therapy, practising active listening and empathy, and setting boundaries in relationships. By taking the time to understand and address the root causes of your conflict avoidance, you can learn to navigate conflicts more healthily and productively. This will not only improve your relationships but also lead to greater personal growth and fulfilment.

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