Relationships And Ultimatums

A relationship can be stressful if your partner is talking at you instead of to you. A healthy relationship should be a partnership between two people. However, in some instances one person will attempt to dominate the other. Such behavior will inevitably lead to friction regardless of how patient or docile the other partner may be.

An ultimatum is nothing more than a demanding way of getting your way. Forcing someone to make a decision in a relationship may seem like you won the battle, but in the end you’ll lose the war. Ultimatums are immature threats. Telling your partner that if he goes out with his friends, you’ll leave him is an ultimatum. However, if you make idle threats he may just tell you to leave. If you spout out ultimatums all the time, eventually he’ll get tired of it, and he may reach the point where he doesn’t care if you really leave.

Giving ultimatums can be disastrous to a relationship. Remember the adage “Be careful what you wish for,” because you just may find yourself with no relationship at all. Most people don’t like being forced into demanding choices, especially when those choices come from a person that is supposed to love them. Making demands and giving ultimatums puts people on the defensive and only causes more problems.

So how do you deal with ultimatums? Don’t let your partner back you into a corner by dishing out ultimatums. Set boundaries and let your partner know what you will and will not do. Make it clear that you don’t respond to ultimatums. Let your partner know that you are willing to compromise and that you are open to any suggestions to improve your relationship. Communicate honestly and often. Talk to your partner and address any concerns you may have. Be willing to listen to her concerns as well. Assure her that you will listen to whatever she has to say, but that you would prefer she talk with you rather than bark commands or throw out ultimatums.

Avoid turning an ultimatum into an argument. If you start battling with your partner over the ultimatum, it may turn into a huge argument. It’s best to just avoid it altogether. Take a walk or ride if necessary and tell your partner you will discuss matters once you’ve both had time to think about things. Agree to disagree. Tell your partner how her ultimatums make you feel. Explain to her that although you are a couple, you are still entitled to your individual feelings and opinions. Neither one of you should have to change to accommodate the other.

After all, you fell in love with each other because of who you are and you should be able to accept each other. Acceptance and trust are key components of a healthy, loving relationship. So stop saying, “or else” and remember that a good relationship is one person getting her way all the time. A healthy relationship is a two way street of communication and compromise.

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