How to Make Up After a Fight: A Couples Counselor’s Guide


How to Make Up After a Fight: A Couple Couneslor's Guide

Wondering about how to make up after a fight? You’re not alone. Fights happen to even the closest, most loving couples. Here’s a plan for recovering from conflict and returning to love.

Learning How to Make Up After a Fight is Critical to Your Relationship

Making up after you have been in a fight with your mate might be the most important skill you can learn in your relationship. For most of us it would seem like we should already know how to do this, but believe me, as a couples counselor this is one of the hardest things we learn on our relationship journey.

Anyone Can and Should Learn How to Make Up After a Fight

It's important to learn how to make up after a fight, like this couple is.

So if you are looking for guidance, here it is. First off, this is not easy. If it were simple we would all know how to do it already. Second, you can learn how. You have learned so many things in your life this is just something else to put in your tool box. Third, everyone can learn it.

I know you are reading this because you don’t like the feelings you are having after struggling with the after-effects of a fight with the person you love. It feels  terrible, like the worst feeling in the world. All of us have felt this too, because every couple on earth will at one time or another hurt each other’s feelings.

Fights in a Relationship Aren’t Wrong, But They Are Common

The fact that we eventually fight is not wrong or bad; it simply is. When in relationships we often misunderstand each other, and that is normal too. It’s not possible to always know how what we say will be received by our mate. It is not possible for them to always say things in a way that feels good to us. We live in different bodies, we have different ways of thinking, we process with two very different minds, and we remember different things. In other words, we are really different from our mate. This can be good in some ways, but not so good in others.

When it’s not so good, we have probably taken something personally and are angry or upset with our partner. We have had a fight and are now wondering how we get back to the place of feeling connected again. Here are some ideas on how to begin.

First, Making Up After a Fight Requires Understanding Why You’re Upset

You’ve gone from feeling okay to feeling upset. You got your feelings hurt. That’s why you’re feeling sad or angry. The first thing you need to do is assess what happened:

  • Did you feel bad when your partner said something?
  • Did they forget to do something for you as promised?
  • Did you just feel unheard?

When you think about the experience, focus your thoughts on organizing just the facts. You see, some of us want to blame the other person for doing something to us (and this my personal tendency). But I know if I don’t just talk about what happened to me, and I blame my partner, he will just get mad at me and then the upset between us continues.

So, the first step toward reconnecting is to figure out what happened to you. If this is too hard and you feel like you might blame your mate, you can skip to the next step that will move you closer to you partner. You can apologize for how you said what you said. Notice I did not say apologize for “what” you said, because there might be some truth in the content. But chances are you might have said it in an angry, accusatory way.

Second, Making Up After a Fight Requires Apologizing

Wondering how to make up after a fight? Apologizing is an important step.

Apologize for the way you said it. It could sound something like this. “Babe, I am sorry about being so aggressive earlier,” or, “Babe, I am sorry for my big energy, I could have said that better to you.” Also, notice I am starting with something soft.

Come from a soft place in you. That will bring your partner to the same soft place—or I hope it will. This process might take some practice over time, but if you stick to it over time, you’ll see something different from your partner.

It might get better, because you are doing something different. When you change, your loved one changes too.

Making Up After a Fight, and Change In Your Relationship, Begins With YOU

And that’s the last thing I want to add. You begin with the process of reconnecting. Don’t wait for them to join you and do it too. Someone has to get into the driver’s seat and lead. And we don’t do this with a big ego; we do this because we want our relationship to thrive and because we love our person.

No one wins when there is disconnection between people who love each other. Learn how to get back together quicker. It will make both of you feel better. I am rooting for you. Now, get going!


Still Want to Know More About How to Make Up After a Fight?

Read a Book About Relationships

'Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship.' A book by Linda Nusbaum.

Can’t make it on Monday? Learn about why we fight, how we fight, and how better communication can help us fight less often and more fairly, by reading Linda’s book, Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It just might help you fight less and feel more connected than ever. Give it a read.

Get Couples Counseling

Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.

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