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Even the happiest couples occasionally have big fights—and if you've had one that ended with one of you stomping off to Starbucks for a while, never fear! The latest relationship research reports that fighting among happy couples is really no big deal.
Up until now, there have been two general ideas on conflict in the world of relationship research. The first is to always refrain from negative communications, and the second suggests that it's not only natural but an important part of being, well, human.
But a new study conducted by researchers at Baylor's College of Arts & Sciences reports that neither of these theories is altogether correct. The study, published in a recent issue of the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, found that results were different for people in satisfying relationships versus those in unhappy relationships.
"For people in satisfying relationships, negative communication was associated with having bigger conflicts, but this effect was entirely harmless because big conflicts were always followed by big resolutions," says the study's lead author, Keith Sanford, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology and neuroscience in Baylor's College of Arts & Sciences.
In other words, happily married (or engaged couples) may have bigger, more intense fights, but they were more likely to resolve those conflicts and be better off for it.
So next time you have a spat with your fiancé, remember how strong your relationship is and know that it's just part of your journey!