Swapping Perspectives During Blowups Can Turn The Tides In Your Relationship

If you had to break down the anatomy of a relationship argument, it might look like this: One person complains about something their partner did, the partner reacts by defending themselves, and they each go back and forth trying to convince the other why their perspective is correct.


We've all been trapped in this kind of altercation before, and sometimes, these fights go on forever. In fact, 69% of relationship conflicts are perpetual, meaning they never get solved, according to relationship researchers at The Gottman Institute. The best you and your significant other can do with these never-ending differences is learn to navigate them in a healthy way — a way that doesn't lead to an even bigger conflict spiral.

One relationship expert shares how changing points of view might de-escalate your next argument before it ever has a chance to blow up, which could be exactly what you need to start feeling heard in your relationship.

To end arguments, stop analyzing

Ivy Miller, a mindset and relationship coach, has an idea why so many arguments create more friction and never get solved between partners. The problem, she says in an Instagram reel, boils down to the perspective you choose to take when initiating a difficult conversation. "Without realizing it, most people, when they're in moments of upset in their relationships, will talk from analysis. For example, 'It was so uncaring of you not to call me when you said you would.'" As she explains, this leaves the other person with two options: They can agree with your view, which still won't resolve the issue at hand, or they'll disagree and defend themselves or shift the blame in the argument (which, let's be honest, is often the more likely outcome). Either way, you're left feeling stuck in a gridlocked conversation.


Instead of scrutinizing the other person's behavior and lecturing them for their wrongdoing, Miller suggests speaking from your experience, "which sounds like, 'When I didn't receive a phone call from you, I felt really disappointed and honestly a little forgotten,'" she says. The idea is to stop playing the judge role and instead put your emotions and needs front and center.

How to use the relationship-saving technique (and what to do if it backfires)

If you're not used to divulging your most vulnerable feelings, especially during times of disagreement with your boo, Ivy Miller's advice may seem challenging at first. If you're too hurt to bare your soul or not even 100% sure yet what you're feeling, turn your attention to the undebatable facts you know to be true at that moment.


Remember, the point isn't to lecture the other person or put them in the hot seat, so keep the focus on information that can't be argued or defended, generally using "I" statements. This includes your personal wants, needs, and preferences to start. For example, in Miller's example, you might say, "I wanted you to call. I like talking to you before I go to bed." These statements can't be debated — they're simply bits of information about you and your opinion, not about the other person.

However, some Instagram users took issue with the relationship coach's advice in the video's comment section. "I try that approach, and I'm told I'm being too sensitive, or it's not worth discussing because it's so silly," wrote one viewer. This kind of response from a partner can be a sign of gaslighting in a relationship. Stand firm, and don't give in if they suggest you're asking for too much. If the conversation seems to be going nowhere, excuse yourself until things cool down.