“What are you doing! You almost got hit by a car taking that corner too wide!” My voice is a bit raised as my beloved and I ride home.
“No I didn’t! They weren’t even close to hitting me!” He defends.
It turns out that we have different definitions of “close”.
Our biggest relationship conflict is around driving. We have totally different driving styles. He’s more daring than me and doesn’t like to follow certain ettiquete which triggers feelings of not being safe which I tend to overreact to because trauma in my nervous system gets activated.
It seems like a surface argument, but there is actually more happening on a deeper level.
Conflict resolution is essential to sacred union. In partnership, we have the joy of looking into the deepest mirror of our gifts and shadows. When wounds are triggered, how can we lay down our word swords and come back to tending and compassion?
It is the hardest when trauma is activated and the defense shield is up.
It can feel so uncomfortable to stay in the body.
But being present with the body is the gift.
It’s the rewiring that happens on a biological level.
We don’t have it all figured out, but are so grateful for the tools we both have. I felt inspired to share incase they are also supportive to you.
TIPS FOR CONFLICT RESOLUTION
Try not to have charged interactions in the car. It’s one of the worst places for it.
The energy is already chaotic from moving and one person is 1/2 distracted from driving.
If you can, create a sacred space at home or in nature to have a conversation. Light candles, soft piano music, smoke cleansing, etc.
Water brings peace and reconciliation to a room, so if you want to go the extra step, gather a bowl of water from nature nearby or sit near a moving body of water.
Start from Stillness
Feel into your Heart
Ask these questions:
What’s true? Aka what actually happened.
What is trigger/trauma?
Where can you take responsibility? (Yes, be mature and do it first if needed)
Are they also able to take responsibility? (If not, that is a red flag)
Where can you support each other to see blind spots?
Where can you embrace shadow work?
Where can you grow in love?
Take turns speaking and responding & if it feels right you can also time it.
End with 3 things you are grateful for about the other person.
It can also be helpful to take talking breaks to regulate the nervous system with silent nurturing touch.
Face each other sitting down and each put a hand on the others heart
Face each other sitting down with knees touching
Lay down facing each other holding hands
Sometimes it’s helpful to sleep on things and come back to them in the morning. Although it is good to not go to bed upset it doesn’t mean that you have to stay up all night trying to work something out. Sleep & dream time can also help resolve things as does space.
Agree about the tools you are going to try while you are in a not triggered state.
It takes two to tango. An argument is never one persons fault. It’s a trauma key in a trauma lock that fits perfectly. But the beauty is that when you can finally turn the key, there is a treasure of deeper intimacy on the other side of the door.
What is your most helpful tool when there is conflict present with your beloved?