Chris Markiewicz's Blog
Every Monday – thoughts, observations and ideas that hold up a mirror to who & how we are

What, no rows?


A couple I know claimed that they never ever rowed. I found this very difficult to believe, assuming that all couples row from time to time and that it’s all part and parcel of a healthy relationship. They’d known each other since they were fifteen –  childhood sweethearts. They stayed together “till death do us part” with his sad, premature demise at the age of 44. Coming away from a spat with my own partner the other day, I was reminded of my friends’ assertion. I tried to work out how it might have been that they never rowed. In recalling their relationship, I came up with an insight, after all these years, as to the reason. I think it boiled down to two things I’d never, ever seen them do:

  1. They never interrupted each other
  2. They never badmouthed each other – either when together or behind each others’ backs.

I’m sure I’ve said in previous posts that the best way to start an argument is to interrupt – what I called the “UVV” (uncontrolled verbal vomit). I remain convinced that this is the primary cause and contributor to rows. I did it several times the other evening during the difficult interaction with my partner – and I’m supposed to teach this stuff! As for badmouthing, I suggest that this adds significantly to the toxic, negative environment within which a relationship has little chance of genuinely flourishing. I find it remarkable that these observations about my friends have only now come to me after so many years. Based on this, I realise they were indeed telling the truth about their row-free life, although I’m sure they will have had disagreements. But that’s different and OK – what counts is how we handle them. I’m still learning.

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One Response to “What, no rows?”

  1. Chris – as ever, very insightful.
    I am currently in the process of writing a blog article about successful, or perhaps I should say unsuccessful, communication. How easy it is for things to be misunderstood or misinterpreted. Being clear and respectful will go a long way to being row free.
    Best
    M


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