The couple is a complex entity in which various behaviors and dynamics develop, some favor a strengthening of the relationship, and others not so positive, they cause the relationship to weaken.
No relationship is free to generate behaviors in both directions, that is, positive dynamics such as active listening, empathy towards the other, complicity, mutual support, among others, and negative dynamics such as withdrawal of attention, criticism, communication blocking, etc.
Although the ideal would be the elimination of each and every one of the negative behaviors, we can say that a relationship with good health is one that maintains a high rate of positive dynamics and a low rate of negative ones.
Despite this, there are a series of dynamics that predict the success or failure of a relationship regardless of whether positive behaviors are present in it.
NEGATIVE COUPLE DYNAMICS
No one is perfect and therefore no one is free to be criticized for a certain behavior or action. Now, criticism is not the same as a complaint, the difference is that in constructive criticism we refer to the behavior and not to the person, while in a complaint there is a personal attack.
For example, it is not the same to say to the couple “when you are late and you don’t tell me I feel bad because I worry” as to say “you are selfish who goes about his business without thinking about others.” In the first case, I refer to the behavior of my partner with which I do not agree and I let him know while in the second case, I attack my partner as a person, this will generate in the other a feeling of being attacked and rejected, which will promote a dynamic of criticism between the two.
It is one of the most destructive behaviors in a relationship. Teasing, sarcasm, humiliation, ridicule, and underestimation of the other are examples of contempt. When we exhibit these behaviors we generate in the other a feeling of frustration, offense, and lack of respect that facilitate the establishment of these hostile behaviors repeatedly.
THE DEFENSIVE ATTITUDE
This attitude implies not accepting the other’s position and responding by counterattacking. For example, one member of the couple says to the other: “Why don’t you ever wash the dishes? “And the other responds” I don’t do it because you never help me “, this means transferring the responsibility we have in the conflict to the other, we transmit the message that the problem is not ours but only yours.
The defensive person does not recognize their share of responsibility for the problem and therefore will not assume that they have the capacity to solve it, they simply try to blame the other and victimize themselves. This attitude generates feelings of frustration, anger, and rejection in the other person.
THE EVASIVE ATTITUDE
This attitude implies disconnection. During the conflict the evasive attitude manifests itself with evasiveness, indifference, lack of listening, doing another task while the other is speaking. This means building a wall in communication and therefore a gap between the members of the couple, where communication will eventually die out and therefore the possibility of solving problems.
Notice any of these 4 behaviors is present in your relationship, try to identify it at the moment, and replace it with another more constructive and functional one since if it becomes a habitual way of relating to your partner, the failure of the relationship is yet to come.