Conflicts In Relationships – The Untold Story Of Emotions

Conflicts in relationships

I have yet to come across a person who could say ‘I have never faced any conflict in relationships.’ Disagreements and disillusionments are as natural as breathing. Even the relationship of siblings, which is based on emotional memories they gathered and the love they shared since childhood, gets warped by circumstances, choices and people who influence their lives.

The loving relationship of a brother and sister gets frayed the moment they fall in love or choose a partner, who becomes more important, who controls their life, who wants all the attention and love and who considers any other family member an intruder. It happens with their relationship with parents too.

We all know this truth but never accept or discuss it. We pretend all is well. The chasm gets wider with the passage of time and smarter partners start calling you a member of extended family! You need their permission to visit their home, you have to learn diplomacy to deal with your own loving relationships, you have to say all pleasant words and even innocent remarks get misinterpreted.

We learn pretentions, we have to become hypocritical, greet each other with fake smiles and kind words even when our emotions are in a volcanic state.

While conflicts lead to healthy relationships, they can throttle us if they are not addressed at the appropriate time.

Some people don’t confront the conflicts, brush them into the corners and never ask any questions. Probably they are scared of shattering the superficial peace that seems to exist in their house, which never becomes a home. Their relationship issues keep smoldering.

Some don’t have a choice and therefore accept it as their life, become mute spectators to their rights being trampled and become doormats. They learn to suppress their emotions and convince themselves that their wishes and desires are superfluous. They take pleasure in pleasing their family members and dwell in self-made graves.

Some start ignoring the conflicts, make their own choices and find happiness in whatever is available around them. If they happen to be financially independent, they find solace in their work. They drift away from each other and their relationships never grow.

When insensitivity creeps into relationships, when feelings and emotions are not shared, they create an unknown wedge between relationships. They breed anger and angst and there is no limit to these negative emotions.

Non-communication can lead to serious rifts and it is one of the major reasons of drifting apart. Emotions need an outlet, a channel that makes them flow spontaneously.

Emotional outbursts are better than carrying an emotional baggage.

Repressed emotions are like a volcano and silence becomes a lid for them. I am sure you can understand what happens when a volcano bursts!Nurture relationships

All relationships are valuable; all of them are brittle and have to be handled astutely.

‘Relationship’ is a very wide term…it is not just a connection between two persons, which immediately comes to your mind when you hear this term.

The most precious relationship begins in the womb…a motherly binding that you experience the moment you feel the sensation of that small movement of your baby.

Relationships connect us not just by blood or marriage; they also refer to the emotional binding between people, family members, teachers and students, business partners and clients etc.

“There is no formula to relationships. They have to be negotiated in loving ways, with room for both parties, what they want and what they need, what they can do and what their life is like.”—Mitch Albom

You may like to read more about emotions and relationships and how to handle the conflicts.

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

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Balroop Singh.


36 thoughts on “Conflicts In Relationships – The Untold Story Of Emotions

  1. What an insightful and amazing article Balroop. I know full well about the various types of unhealthy relationships first hand. In my memoir I write about such relationships with my siblings who remain harboring their inner struggles with the relationship we each had with our narcissistic mother. Without release it festers within. I was lucky to be able to step out of that box, but some can’t seem to find the courage to release what infects the soul. 🙂 ❤

    1. Most of the struggles that go within are connected with our relationship with people who happen to be in our lives and we have no choice but accept their imperfections and change our own selves or walk away. I am so glad that you could deal with those unhealthy relationships Deb and even write about them. It is so cathartic! You seem to have moved on after penning down all your anguish.Thank you for sharing your thoughts dear friend. Stay blessed 🙂

  2. A very honest and thoughtful reflection on relationships and conflicts. Agree that conflicts are within each relationship, and each relationship changes over time. It can be sad when someone we knows finds a partner or even does something out of the ordinary that we may not agree, and we can all start to realise this may be the downfall of the relationship. Agree negotiation can help iron out issues, but also at the same time it is necessary to see each other as individuals and let them be, giving them our best wishes.

    1. Changing relationships are hurtful in the beginning but slowly we learn to accept the harsh realities of life. However, if all relationships could be balanced, if we could learn from the wisdom of ages, disillusionments and anguish can be alleviated. ‘Let them be’ is indeed as important as respecting the bonds. Thanks for your insights Mabel.

  3. An in-depth study of conflicts in relationships, Balroop. Of course disagreements, conflicts will be found in all relationships; the key is that there is a strong element of love and care that should eclipse any disagreements so discussions can take place in a safe place and all voices be heard. Feelings left unsaid do fester and build up to toxic levels over time.

    1. Some conflicts go beyond disagreements and become detrimental to relationships. Love and care gets drowned in the egoistic demands and expectations…such situations become difficult to handle.
      Thanks for sharing your thoughts Annika, much appreciated. 🙂

  4. Beautifully written, so well captured the essence of conflict management in building and nurturing relationships. These are integral part of our interactions and conversations between friends to families, and these keep changing with time and with changing relationship. We all evolve as human being and as we do, we start seeing different perspectives in life and our outlook towards life changes. Many times, the changes are dramatic in nature. There are so many smaller things in our life that gets wider when we don’t address it at the beginning, our habit for postponement and leave it for a long time. The chasm and the wedge…goes wider.

    I agree Balroop when we cannot handle, we become pretentiousness and we become hypocritical, and we drag things and we brag things that makes the very thing go from bad to worse and we lose the plot of right articulation and resolution of such issues. Unfortunate part of life when we have no choice and when we are helpless and we have no option to come out of such unhealthy situations in life which makes relationship decline and delete in its energy and engagement.

    These lines are superbly articulated by you “All relationships are valuable; all of them are brittle and have to be handled astutely….” and I love this sentence, the choice of words and so much this sentence conveys in it’s brevity.
    Thanks as always for such profound thoughts.

    1. Thank you Nihar, for sharing your words of wisdom and adding so much depth to the topic. I agree with you that we learn the art of handling conflicts as we mature albeit many relationships get completely eroded by the time we arrive at such a phase of life.
      Thanks for your lovely words of appreciation.

      1. So aptly put that many relationships get completely eroded by the time we arrive at certain phase of our life. But we have little control and many times we try and we break our head but we head nowhere and we all scramble for space to wriggle out of such self imposed exile and get the relationships going and making life purposeful by maintaining a healthy and happy life.

  5. I agree, Balroop. You’ve explained this so well! Sometimes, unfortunately, people who nurture and see the best and keep trying in their relationships still lose. But that’s why it’s important to know when to say no more and heal own self. For the most part though, all of these things you mention can help sustain a relationship. They say it’s a bad sign when you never fight (mainly referring to a romantic couple or married people). I can say too, that friendships should be able to withstand a storm or two.

    1. You are right Lisa, people lose because they refuse to respect the individuality of others. Healthy relationships demand respect and kindness, appreciation of other person’s perspective and readiness to make compromises… those who understand these basics can withstand all storms. 🙂

  6. What a great post Balroop! You really have the words to talk about relationships. I believe Communication is key. We need to solve the conflicts or at least find why they existed in the first place, talk about our emotions and respect the emotions of others. Or else we can be sure that our relationships will never be sane and serene.
    Love reading you. May you have a wonderful week!
    Love from sunny Paris.

    1. Yes Marie, communication is the key only if some one honestly communicates his/her emotions and feelings. There are those who refuse to come out of their shell and go back even when they are pulled out…such relationships are doomed! Thanks for standing by dear friend, love your perspective. Wonderful week to you too. 🙂

  7. I have gone through most of what you’ve mentioned – and a lot of us would feel so. The way to deal with it is to come open on what has been troubling us, nothing beats communication and expressing oneself freely (as you’ve pointed out).

    1. You are right Alok! Problems persist just for lack of communication or hypocrisy in relationships. All don’t come our open either due to inflated egos or insecurities, which they refuse to admit!

  8. A wise and insightful post. Balroop. I couldn’t agree more that conflict which isn’t dealt with can become toxic. My ex-husband didn’t like conflict and I think that’s one of the main reasons he’s my ex. We were never able to talk things through and they festered. Better to clean out the wound and cauterize it. Then the healing has a chance. Excellent post, my friend. ❤

    1. I have seen many toxic relationships around me…hanging in limbo, causing unpleasantness and stress. Healing only begins if both sides are receptive and ready to share their emotions. Thank you Diana for sharing your personal experience with us. Stay blessed! 🙂

  9. We all have faced conflicts in different relationships. It’s the way one handles the situation, makes the difference. Sometimes, it becomes difficult to fill the lacuna created by the lack of communication and misunderstanding. But, if we can keep aside our egos for a while, which is, perhaps, the most difficult thing to do on earth, things get smoother relatively.

    A thorough and insightful post, Balroop. A must read for everyone…

    1. Misunderstandings grow when we don’t share our feelings…sometimes because we know they won’t be heard or reciprocated. Egos do intervene in a big way…we all know that yet we let them play havoc with our relationships! I wish people could be kinder and forgiving.
      Thanks for your inputs dear Mani, much appreciated 🙂

  10. I was nodding my head in agreement all along this very insightful post, Balroop.
    It has taken me a long time to realise but am glad I finally chose to become the one who wants to speak her mind, to build the channel of communication beyond the barriers of assumptions. Like you rightly mentioned, making a conscious effort and taking the time to stay connected lies at the core of making any relationship thrive despite the differences that might creep up over time.

    1. I am glad that you could break those barriers Era, which we build around us when we are young and don’t really know how to respond…communication is a two-way channel and if we don’t get the right response, we tend to withdraw, wondering whether we are right. Confidence building is a slow process and if it is hindered by toxic people around us, it becomes slower.
      Thank you for sharing your view dear friend. Have a nice weekend.

  11. All of communication is negotiation. If we can’t share our initial thoughts, we can’t work on making meaning together in a relationship. My ex never got that, but I’m glad to be in a relationship now where both of us are okay with making that awkward start to explain ourselves and then further refine meaning.

    1. I am happy for you Jeri…new avenues often lead us to desired goals…all relationships ought to have understanding, respect and acceptance of opinion. Thanks for sharing your experience. 🙂

  12. Such a thoughtful post!

    I once heard someone say that relationships, And maybe especially their conflicts, are meant to teach us something. So I try to look at it that way to see what I can learn.

    And then I get to learn more from reading posts like this.

    1. Thanks for such a positive view Georgia…we do learn from conflicts…even those with closed minds are challenged by discord in relationships.

  13. “Relationships build character,” that’s what I say. Without relationships – good or bad – we would be a blank slate. I’ve always believed that we are placed here on Earth to build relationships, to pass the challenge of finding love and empathy and understanding for each person we meet, whether sibling, spouse, or friend. Your post is lovely Balroop. xo

  14. Loved reading your incisive analysis on the different ways in which we handle relationships. Though we all yearn for relationships that we can cherish, somehow we find some or the other conflict developing in our relationship when our interests or behaviour clash. Yes, relationships also refer to the emotional connection that we develop with all those we deal with, and we need to maintain all of these for a smooth sailing. As you say emotional outbursts are much needed for sanity but too frequent or excessive outbursts also lead to bitterness in a relationship.

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