There are many relationships in your life. You have a relationship with your family, with your friends, with your co-workers, with people you know and others. No matter how close people are, there are times when arguments happen. But some people do not fight fair, which damages and even destroys relationships.
Avoid the temptation to use this “fight” or discussion to mention the many ways your partner has disappointed or the many things he or she has done wrong in the recent past. Pick the one thing you are currently frustrated or angry about and let your partner know about that one thing.
If you are angry about something, you partner has the right to know. There may even be a simple solution! It is unfair to both yourself and your partner to let a problem build. If you have not addressed a problem within 48 hours of the occurrence, you should be prepared to let it go.
Do not use abusive language; Agreed, it might be somewhat difficult to be respectful while in a conflict situation but that is no excuse to use abusive language.
Acknowledge the other person’s hurt. Regardless of who is at fault, there will be hurt. Dismissing the other person’s hurt is a recipe for disaster.
Control your emotions. You don’t have permission to scream or be otherwise abusive. You are entitled to give voice to your legitimate feelings but not in a childish way. Disagree without being disagreeable. Try to be pleasant and calm in the midst of a fight. It is possible to disagree and still laugh together. Deborah and I do it all the time.
Keep your voices down. When you feel yourself start to shout, stop, take a deep breath, consider what you want to say, and try again. And actually, you’re responsible for your own feelings. If a partner yells, step back, point it out, and bring it down. My guess is that whatever you’re fighting about isn’t worth this.