As anyone in a committed
or long-term relationship
can attest, it is important to know how to fight fair
ly with your partner
. Most people
do not do this. I have a few guidelines
that I try to follow, though admittedly, when the other person doesn't try to follow the same guidelines it becomes very difficult
to follow my own rules.
Refrain from personally insulting the other person. That means no name calling. (i.e. bitch, asshole, shrew, etc.)
Leave past fights in the past. If that fight is resolved, there is no reason to bring it into the current one.
Don't emotionally blackmail the other party. In other words, no "You're angry at me, you must not love me anymore."
Do not bring the other party's family into the argument. (This one tends more toward those fights between married couples.)
Bringing in other people as messengers is a bad idea. That just makes the other person think you don't care enough to bring the message yourself.
Try to not get overly emotional in an argument of logic. That just undermines your own arguments and gives the other person more ammunition.
Conversely, in an emotional combat, don't employ solely logic. That tends to give the other party the impression that you are cold and uncaring.
Lastly, give the problem time to settle. Don't try to work it out when the other party doesn't want to, or when it is still too fresh a wound.
Now, if I could just stick to these better than I do...