One of the things I like about writing these entries is that I get to re-live some of the best and worst moments of Bryan and I’s life together. Some of the times are easy to remember, and I want to keep thinking about them over and over. Some of the times, like our first serious fight, is one of those moments that I don’t want to re-live, but I don’t mind talking about.
When Bryan and I moved in together, we knew our lives weren’t going to be full of cute puppies and rainbows. We knew that through all of the good times and the love and the laughs, there would be some point where things would get rocky because of the natural progression of our relationship (and the natural tension of living together when you’re both totally different people) We didn’t think it would be anything that would rock us to the core, but we never saw ourselves being the people who never fight– it just didn’t seem realistic.
We’ve argued before with just little dumb stuff like car directions, or cleaning details around the apartment, but nothing that couldn’t roll off the shoulder, and nothing that was actually THAT serious.
What caused the big fight is the least important thing in all of the story, because in the end, I cooled off, he apologized and we grooved back into life as normal. It was my reaction that startled me.
I’ve always been averse to conflict. I hate facing it, I hate trying to defend myself, and I always become flustered– the words just never seem to come out right. In case you never experienced it, it’s horrible to be on the side of an argument that you can’t defend yourself from.
So when I felt hurt, I clamped down, I put up all walls, and I did what I do best. I shut Bryan out.
It started with just being cold while watching TV. I couldn’t laugh, or react, or emote. I was just so upset. When he asked me to just sit down and talk about it all, I just closed my eyes.”no, I just want to go to bed,” I told him.This is probably the worst thing you can do. I know that through and through, but it’s always my first reaction.
He tried to hug me, but I slipped through his grip and made a bee line for our bedroom. I closed the door and burrowed under the covers. He tried comforting me, but I just kept saying that I wanted to be alone. After a few minutes of silence, he just said “babe, I know you’re upset. I’ll sleep on the couch tonight.”
After I was sure he wouldn’t be back in for a while, and after my eyes weren’t stinging anymore, I pulled out my iPad and I googled “how to survive your first fight.”
Spoiler alert, you’ll have to learn how that happens on your own. Google isn’t helpful for once, and nothing anyone tells you can help either. Also, this is my generation. Googling your problems, hoping that someone has already solved them for you.
If you weren’t aware, Bryan is my first serious boyfriend. There have been others, but they’ve horrible to me (that one time that confrontation came out of nowhere!), or non-committal, or just downright stupid, so I never learned how to truly love someone through the good and bad, or how to let trust be the guiding factor in a relationship. Or how to survive a fight, because a fight always meant that you broke up. It took everything I had to just think about how I’ve never gotten many opportunities to love or trust someone as much as I love and trust Bryan. I’ve never looked someone in the eye while being so mad at them, only to feel like I could never walk away. So, I took a deep breath, and I walked through our bedroom door.
I came back out to the living room after lying down and just letting it all go for moment. The hardest thing for me was just being able to verbalize why I was so mad. Bryan understood and apologized. I said I was sorry too, and we spent the rest of the night cuddling and getting over our first fight. None of it was easy.
I never want to fight again.