Texting someone to resolve conflict (or blasting them on a social media platform) \\\ This is just plain passive & disrespectful. Messages can be perceived differently than intended, oftentimes people allow the “screen shield” to be an excuse to say something more hurtful over a message than they would in person, and I’m going to go on a limb and guess that you have never heard anybody say “Wow, thank you so much for bringing this conflict to my attention over a text message. I really feel heard and valued.”
Avoiding conflict \\\ This one hits home for me. I am a very direct and assertive person and many friendships in the past have gone south because the other person was not willing to have a conversation about simple conflicts. I do understand that many people have trouble with this and that conflict can induce anxiety for some. However, it is a struggle worth working on – it comes down to a matter of courtesy and simplicity. If you have a problem with someone, you will be giving them a courtesy by rationally approaching the issue before it snowballs into something bigger. It also allows for relational simplicity because you can solve each minor problem as it comes instead of engaging in hurtful arguments after resentment has grown.
Telling others about conflict with your spouse \\\ I am not talking about calling your most trusted girlfriend and asking how she handles a certain conflict in her marriage or if she has any advice on how you can kindly approach a topic. I am talking here about venting to you friends/family about something your spouse does (or doesn’t!) do. Calling a friend instead of resolving conflict with your husband. Giving a play-by-play to your sister of a heated argument in your marriage. This is dangerous territory. Every couple has different boundaries in terms of which specifics can be talked about with others… if you haven’t done so already, talk to your husband and create these boundaries together! Then… stick to them! This is a perfect way to show respect to your husband and your marriage.
Using words to purposefully tear down others \\\ We’ve all done it. Said something to a loved one that made us feel good in the moment but was detrimental to the other person. That feeling that you get in the midst of an angry moment when you wish you had some pink gloves & a punching bag? I think since us women are generally geared towards words to express our emotions, it can feel far too easy at times to snap some harsh ones during a conflict. Words do hurt and in the end, proving our point isn’t worth the scar they leave on our loved ones. If this is a particular struggle for you, I gracefully urge you to stare into that mirror and reflect on your possible feelings of: resentment • anger • jealousy • distrust • fear
Using someone’s past wrongs against them \\\ This is a toughie. We all struggle with this from time to time, amen? Oftentimes without realizing it. When an argument is over, it’s over. Forgiveness is not conditional and there is no expiration date. True grace has not been given if the issue is thrown in the other’s face the next time it comes up. This one is biblical, guys. That doesn’t make it easy, but it means it’s not just my opinion. Let’s always strive to be Christlike!