Disagreeing Without Being Disagreeable
Disagreements in marriage are inevitable; fights about disagreements don’t have to be.
I think most of us put far too much importance on our opinions, and those of us who are male seem worse about this than most other genders. We act as if agreeing or disagreeing with us is a vote on us as people; agree if you think I’m good/smart/handsome, disagree if you think I am bad/stupid/ugly. With those kinds of stakes, every difference of opinion has the power to hurt or upset us.
If we can learn to hold our opinions a bit further from ourselves, we can relax a bit. A disagreement becomes an academic exercise, not a referendum on how well we are doing in life.
I wonder if this has gotten worse because society as a whole seems more and more given to being polarised. Talk show hosts discuss political differences as if “the other side” are horrible monsters who want to do unspeakable things to the elderly, children, this race, that income level, and so on. Those who have different ideas are vilified, making rational discussion impossible. Have we taken this into ourselves, making us feel hated and attacked by anyone who doesn’t agree with us?
Just food for thought.