Relationship fights are never something one should look forward to. They’re always these sweaty, heart-racing, blood-churning conversations that pull you to the brink of your happiness and depression all in one day.
But honestly, I do cherish those incredibly stressful times between Kevin and I because, even though he and I are tested to our limits sometimes, I know we should be better for each other in the end.
I want to share with you a story that illustrates that relationship fights are really just a sort of trade-off of leadership. Let me explain.
As you might already know, Kevin wasn’t always a supporter of what I am doing online. I often feel the pressure to deliver financially, when the reality of what I’m doing takes time and success isn’t over-night.
This conversation came up again.
“I’m the one paying for everything” Kevin stated.
“Well, if you feel like you’re the only one working, do you even value what I do?” I said. I felt defeated and thought to myself “did we just back track two years?” But after a quiet moment to let the fear and my worst thoughts run past me.
I let those fears go.
Marriage is a trade-off of leadership
After the emotions and tears had gone from me, I began to get clarity on how I was going to change this conversation. First of all, Kevin is completely and understandably VALID in his hesitation to support what I’m doing without proof. I must make that clear. If he did not question my drive and my vision, I wouldn’t be challenged to be more focused and be better at my craft.
At first, it might make someone angry with the thought of your partner not being fully committed or board with your goals and your vision. I was angry. But is that really the case? Or had I simply not created the environment for which that support could grow?
Now I was clear.
Letting the emotion of that misunderstanding consume me, is a bad habit. I didn’t do that this time. This time, I simply OVER-communicated:
“It’s okay that you’re not 110% there for me. It’s okay that my biggest cheerleader is not my partner. It only tells me that I haven’t shown you yet, the power of what it is I’m doing. I will show you. You will value this. And in time, you’ll see. I think it’s fine that you’re not there yet. I understand where you’re coming from and it’s a fair feeling to have. But I will show you.”
And I state that it is an OVER-communication. We don’t normally voice this robotic way of thinking, but it really helps to see the rationality of the situation instead of being misconstrued in the emotion of it.
And with that, I gained my confidence back and just in that moment alone. I not only became stronger, he did too. This wasn’t a competition of who can win the argument, rather, who can be a leader for us in this moment of crisis? There have been so many times Kevin has led me out of the darkness and pulled me out of my fears. Now, it was my turn to lead him from his.
Arguments are something I used to think of as constructive discussions, which they are. But after this, I see them as a test of our teamwork. Who will lead their teammate out of the fear and misunderstanding that borns these relationship fights in the first place? Marriage is his trade-off of leadership. We both must learn how to lead and how to follow each other.
April and Eric from the Power of Moms a husband and wife team who I got to sit down with, gave me some very good marriage advice:
“You don’t have to worry about you, because your partner takes care of you. Become self-less instead of selfish.”
I took that advice very seriously and took it right back to Kevin. Slowly, we’re working together to be better. And I’m incredibly lucky and thankful to be where we are. Nothing will ever be handled perfectly, but to communicate to each other that you are trying really makes all the difference in the world.