How to Deal with a Stubborn Partner
Are you dealing with a stubborn partner that’s stubborn as hell?
They’re set in their ways and won’t budge for anything?
It’s their way or their way? You don’t have any highway option…
I’m laying it on a bit thick but you get the idea. Dealing with a stubborn person is like pulling teeth sometimes. I should know because I plan on spending the rest of my life with one. He may not be my perfect man, but he's mine.
At the start of my relationship with Love, I was the timid insecure girl with her first boyfriend who was very independent and used to “doing him.” He was set in his ways and didn’t care too much to answer for anything. Clearly, he’s the stubborn partner in this post.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved how sure of himself he was and knew what he wanted, needed and expected. It was all black and white with him. But sometimes… Sometimes it caused problems.
We didn’t really argue but when we did, it felt like I was talking to a brick wall that threw pebbles at me. There were no good feelings had after fights because we never “made up.” We just ended all arguments so they wouldn’t get worse. We didn't try to fight fair at all.
Now seven years in and after having the same arguments over and over again, I can honestly say I know how to handle my stubborn partner. If you have the right mindset, it isn’t that hard. …Even if you don’t have the right mind set…you can develop it...then it won’t be that hard...
Here are 9 tips I’ve learned along the way to help you deal with your stubborn partner.
1. Don’t try to change them.
Very little is harder than changing a stubborn person. It’s like walking up a ninety-degree angle carrying a boulder. It’s pointless and a time and energy suck. Instead of going head on with who your stubborn partner naturally is, you should work alongside of them. This will get you to results a bit faster and a bit calmer. Not to mention you’re supposed to love your partner for who they are, but you knew that!
2. Pick your battles.
This is one of the tougher ones. You need to evaluate whether them not picking up something or putting the toilet seat down is detrimental to your life or your relationship. I’m speaking from a woman’s point of view, but it works both ways. If your issue is only annoying and won’t have any negative lasting effects, just tuck it away. Why get all up in a hussy if you know nothing new will come of it. You have hands, you can turn on the bathroom light and put the toilet seat down yourself.
When Love and I first moved in with each other, we would argue about the same issues like three times a year. We'd try and work on the other persons wants but the effort always died out. Because we already knew what the other wanted from the repeat arguments, there was no need to keep having the same argument over and over. Now, we just don't bring any of it up making arguments more few and far between.
3. Talk to them when they can pay attention.
Even though you guys are in an argument, you each deserve the respect of the others undivided attention. Your stubborn partner needs to hear you. Not only is it the mature thing to do but it will help keep you from feeling dismissed, either accidentally or intentionally.
I refuse to bring up any issue with Love when he can't listen to me. If he's at work or watching T.V. I won't bring anything important up because he won't hear me. He'll passively agree to anything to end my distraction and will more than likely forget whatever the issue is. If I have a problem we need to work on, I bring it up when our living room is quiet and it's just us.
4. Listen and acknowledge your stubborn partner.
It’s a double ended sword. …I think that’s right… If it’s not, here’s what I mean. Just as much as you want your points and feelings listened to, so does your partner. When they’re talking to you, actually think about what they’re saying and say it right back to them. Let them know that their opinions are valid too.
When talking to Love, I make a point to say, "I understand your point and your reasoning A, B and C..." With this, he knows I don't have closed mind about his issues. It validates that what he wants is important to me, even if he's wrong.
5. Watch your words.
The easiest way to lose validity in an argument is to be childish and attack your stubborn partner beyond the issue at hand. This should honestly just be an argument rule in general. Keep it clean and happy.
6. Be direct.
If you didn't know, a stubborn person will argue their point with their feet planted firmly in the ground. They will not waver. You will know what they want. You need to do the same thing. Get to your point quick and stay strong. Believe in what you're saying and make sure your stubborn partner knows how much it means to you.
7. Remain calm.
Don't let heated heads prevail. It's the easiest way to get off topic and end up with nothing good.
8. Be willing to adjust.
Sometimes, you will lose the argument and that's okay. If your stubborn partner can't see it your way or you're actually wrong, you'll have to be willing to go with the flow and let it go. Don't hold anything against them and don't struggle for your point to right. It wasn't meant to be so you need to adapt to the results.
9. Apologize when you're wrong.
This tip should be used for every scenario, but we're focusing on your stubborn partner right now. No one likes to argue for arguments sake. Your partner needs to know that if they're right, you'll acknowledge it. If you do this, they'll have no problem easing up on their stance when they're clearly wrong.
Once I learned all of these strategies and actually used them, things were a lot better. Now Love and I don't really argue about anything. There's still the annoyance factor but nothing with heavy emotions. Our relationship is a bit more enjoyable because I strategically learned to deal with my stubborn partner.
Do you have a stubborn partner? What are some of the methods you use to handle them? Let us know in the comments below.