How to Handle an Angry Partner
There are quite a few angry people in the world, and you may even know one or two. And if you’re in a relationship with one of them, you know life isn’t fairy-tale perfect. But even Snow White got along with Grumpy! Here’s how to handle an angry partner, dwarf or anyone you share space with.
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The Challenges You Face
According to psychologytoday.com, there are two main challenges people face when dealing with an angry partner:
1. Turning Into an Angry Person Yourself
2. Trying to Get Your Partner to Change Their Negative Perspective
Turning Into an Angry Person Yourself
Anger can’t literally rub off a person and onto another like the flu or the cold, but figuratively speaking it does. When you’re around someone who is bitter and angry all the time, you can’t help but start to resent them and the situation you’re in with them. Soon, you’ll become what you loathe or find troublesome.
Trying to Get Your Partner to Change Their Negative Perspective
The second biggest challenge is trying to get your partner to change their negative perspective. They feel like the world is against them, so you have a lot to do, if you feel like doing it. But know that making people change is nearly impossible if they don’t want to change. If they do want to change, they have to do it for themselves.
You Can Help Your Partner
Your partner feels resentment. They feel like a victim. They may even be arrogant and a bit narcissistic. That’s why they’re stuck in a negative pattern that repeats itself over and over. But should you be compassionate?
According to psychologytoday.com, the compassion you give will only heal you, not your partner. Therefore, you have to be assertive and demand change in your partner—the compassion has to come from them. So how do you demand a change?
Your Emotional Demeanor
In his article, “How to Deal With an Angry Partner,” Steven Stosny, Ph.D., suggests that “… your emotional demeanor is more important than the words you use, and it must stem from the deep conviction that [the angry partner] will not recover without learning to sustain compassion. You must be convinced that you and your family deserve a better life and be determined to achieve it.” He suggests finding your own words to tell your partner that in the current state, neither of you is being the partner you need to be or want to be.
Unlocking the Stalemate
Be resolute in your conviction that if they want to remain in the relationship they need to treat you (and your family) with the dignity and respect you (they) deserve. It is within this type of plea or demand that the angry partner will be able to break free of their negativity by tapping into their compassion—the key to unlocking this stalemate. Tell your angry partner that you both need to value one another and be sympathetic to how the other person feels, and that if the relationship continues in its current state, the two of you will wind up hating each other.
A Better Relationship
Without being able to tap into his or her compassion for others, the angry partner will not be able to step out of their negative space. Having a conversation with them will hopefully make them see that they are jeopardizing their most important relationship(s) and that they are hurting the people they love. By being compassionate, you not only help yourself, but you are showing your partner how to be compassionate as well. Trying to handle an angry partner isn’t easy by any means, but if you truly want to stay together, then following this advice will give you a strong start to a better relationship.