How to Disagree with Dignity

Dear Thinette,


To argue and shout at your partner is not the solution my dear, rather discuss a problem with a calm attitude. How to do it in style and dignity is a challenge.

Never jump to conclusions or lose your temper, calm down and take a moment of clarity. Let’s have a look, what is the difference between an Argument and a Discussion?

What is an Argument

According to the dictionary, arguing is to persuade someone of your beliefs. You want him or her to see it your way, but soon that will lead to blaming and name-calling.

How to Argue or Disagree with Dignity. Couple sitting in deep discussion in the park.What is a Discussion?

A discussion is a continuous way to weigh the pros and cons of an issue. Debate it in a friendly way, without raising your voice, until there are a compromise and a conclusion.

Take a moment

  • Stick to the topic until a mutual decision is reached. Decide which option is the best in the situation.

  • Every difference of opinion has a value, it is either true or false and is in the eye of the beholder. Little difference can be good for a relationship, it helps to understand the way your partner thinks

  • It is wise to listen to a statement, decide if it is true and make sense. It may be an emotional problem or it might be a good idea. If it is not the truth, and a twisted version of reality, it does need attention. Find a quiet place and discuss it.

  • Before getting too upset ask yourself “ How does this affect me? Why am I unhappy and why would I want to argue?” Is it my ego talking, or is it to enhance the relationship?

  • You know, the bad boy adrenaline will rush through your body and make you unhappy, ugly and sick in the process. It is not worth it. See differences as a way to learn to know your partner better

The Anatomy of a Discussion.

This explanation of the anatomy of an argument will clarify the situation and make it easier to find a resolution and not go in never-ending blaming circles.

There are different components to an argument or discussion. Be fair and know, you as a team are against this problem, and not you and the problem against your partner. Solve it as a team.

The Four Components of a Disagreement

This explanation will make it easier to find a resolution and not go in never-ending blaming circles.

There are different components to an argument or discussion,

  • Reason for the difference of opinion

  • Exchanging ideas, to find a solution between partners

  • Conclusion or Outcome

  • Restoring of Peace

One partner accuses and the counterclaim comes from the other partner and is the opposing claim if you will.

Both partners should get time yo give the reasons to their claim and should be in both cases be supported with solid evidence.

Each should get enough time to have their say without Couple-in-discussioninterference.

The two main parts are the evidence and the conclusion.

Your Behavior During a Discussion

  • First of all, kiss and hug before you start. Look your partner in the eyes, and say “Remember I love you” making sure the other will know you still love him or her no matter what.

  • Have definite family rules before such an event occurs, my dear. Put a structure in place, how you will handle these serious discussions in advance and stick to it. Have a ‘safe-word’ to opt-out for a moment or two.

  • Never avoid difference of opinions my dear, discuss it, if not it builds stress and can have a bad influence not only on the relationship but on your health too.

  • Never go into a discussion upset or angry. Schedule a time, be calm and know what you want to achieve. Harmony and peace is your priority. See the bigger picture.

  • Make it very clear, both parties should know exactly what it is about, no misunderstandings.

  • Support your statement with good reason and evidence.

  • Know exactly why you have this disagreement. Both should observe it from a neutral point of view.

  • Make yourself clear, and give your partner time to make him or herself clear too. Listen carefully.

  • If guilty take responsibility for your part. Apologise and do not blame your partner.

  • Never overreact, shout, blame or insult your partner, no name-calling. Blame the situation or behaviour, never the person.

Image of couple arguing, finger pointing and name calling.

  • Don’t let grievances simmer. Get it out in the open as soon as possible.

  • Be fair in your accusations. Was this situation created deliberately or did it happens unintentionally?

  • Accept the fact that you also have guilt in the situation, acknowledge and talk about it, apologize if necessary.

  • Find a compromise both are happy with.

  • Do not be judgmental.

  • Listen to every word, it is important.

  • Never argue in public, rather say “I disagree with you but we can discuss it later.”

  • Agree to disagree instead of keep on arguing. Accept it and move on.

  • Don’t ask your partner to do something you are not prepared to do.

  • Find the culprit of this argument, get to the core.

Talk about the situation afterwards, discuss the possibility that it might occur again and find a way to prevent it.

How to Apologize with Dignity

  • Make sure you both have said it all, everything is off your chest, before apologizing.

  • Apology statements should always start with “ I “

  • I am sorry …

  • I will make sure …

  • I promise …

  • When apologizing never use the words BUT, HOPE, MAYBE, MIGHT, IF. That is still blaming and negative, it cancels the apology, and you are back to square one.

  • Know what you are going to say in your apology. Be prepared.

  • Never hold any grudges, say it all and don’t go back later to talk about it again. It is done and water under the bridge.

  • Don’t ever say “ I told you so “

Be fair and know, you as a team are against this problem, and not you and the problem against your partner. Solve it as a team.

Have regular sessions of troubleshooting. Preventing is much better than solving a problem.

A conclusion should be reached. Be prepared to make compromises in the name of Love.


If you were guilty in any way, it is good to offer a gift of apologies too. Maybe her favourite flowers or a ticket to her favourite show or event, kiss and makeup.

Ways to end a Disagreement

  • Take hands and look into the eyes of your partner and apologise with sincerity, hug and kiss.

How to disagree with dignity. Couple holding hands and looking in each others eyes.

  • Agree to make changes to solve the problem, compromise and adapt.

  • Agree to disagree instead of keep on arguing.

  • Take a break and make some tea if you get too emotional.

  • Write a letter or an email, explaining how it makes you feel.

  • Go for a walk together hand in hand, and talk about the problem

How to disagree with dignity. Couple walking hand in hand on a beach sorting out a problem


The ‘What-If Session’

Have weekly discussions on money matters, plan the buys for the next week, end it with a topic from your list of Prevention.

Call it ‘The What-If’ and ‘ How are we going to solve this’ session. It could be great fun. Make a list of imaginary topics together. Keep it light and do not make it an act of vengeance or an issue.

Any scenario can be a possibility, it is just make-believe, and in this playful way find mutual solutions in a game. Have a safe-word to opt-out if you cannot find a mutual solution or plan of action.

Couple in bed,with a happy smile on their faces, problem solved.

How to Restore a Relationship

  • Precaution. Find a solution so it cannot happen again.

  • Consummate the apology. Great sex and intimate talk afterwards are powerful ways to heal a problem.

This will take the sting out of arguments or disagreements and keeping your dignity .

Love you

Gran Stella


Inspire Motivate and Empower the Next Generation

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