I read somewhere that ‘conflict is a natural part of the creative circle’ or words to that effect. I can agree with that in part, although there’s little creativity in not speaking, which is how a lot of conflict ends up with couples.
I’m a strong believer that you can work towards the avoidance of negative conflict, but you can’t eradicate it. Life throws too much muck to avoid all of it from hitting you! Where the focus, in my opinion, should be is the resolution. Now I’m no expert, however, my sub is. It’s a large part of her working day and she’s good at it. She has shared her skills with me in how she manages our children and by observing that, I too have used them for the greater good. Recognition and acknowledgement of behaviours is a basic requirement.
So who makes the first move to resolve conflict and why do they do it? For me, I want things sorted and back to normal, so I have in the past been the one to instigate ‘that’ conversation. To be fair, it’s usually me that has caused the issue in the first place. It’s important to say sorry; I know it’s just a word, however, it’s a start. In my working world the use of the word sorry is an admission of guilt and liability, and normally avoided. I suppose in some way, domestically, it’s not much different, but I find that to be okay. In a disagreement between two people, each have contributed either positively or negatively, maybe both. Sorry can mean all sorts of things. Sorry, I was wrong; Sorry I’m married to an idiot; Sorry we failed to take a step back and take time to think about this earlier. Either way, instigating the repair of a relationship has to start somewhere and regardless of fault, an effective leader needs stand up and be counted.
A D/s relationship doesn’t make you immune to conflict, it could serve as a banner to remind you that continual logaheads with your partner is a bad thing. However you resolve your issues, there has been a break in the dynamic of the relationship and for us repairing that dynamic is key. Once the talk is over and a way forward is seen, a reset is required. My sub and I prefer a spanking session. It’s very personal, physical and not always sexual. It allows us to bond with one another by breaking down any unwanted feelings and then repairing the closeness during aftercare. It doesn’t work for everyone, but it does for us.
Fortunately these situations are rare and despite any contract we may have, life is not predictable and one has to adapt. I practised Aikido for a number of years and one thing you learn is that there is no rule that says every physical thrust requires a parry or riposte. The same rule applies in a verbal conflict for one can easily escalate into the other.