Paper and Ink: Femme Aimee (10)

Paper and Ink: Femme Aimee (10)

By Emmeline Bisiikwa, Uganda:

The thing with our fights is that they are like tennis matches. The ball passes back and forth and the only scores are where we hurt each other. The longer it lasts, the more competitive it gets with more hurtful tries, and most times there isn't a winner. In fairytales, the people who love each other don't fight and are always on the same page but in real life it is so much harder.  Bring two people from different backgrounds, throw in thinking in different languages and using logic in opposite ways and you just might understand the problem.

Trying to understand why you do things is hard enough; trying to figure out another person's logic? You may as well be learning rocket science. Now, women either just like problems, or fate is a vindictive unmarried! Why else would we try to get men to change and become better in order for us to be happy? And that is at the root of every fight, trying to change your partner to the ideal you created in your head.

It is so easy to forget you fell for someone who wasn't a figment of your imagination and neither did he waltz out of a romantic comedy or soap opera. The odds are he is a little more sophisticated than a cave man and can barely manage romance, order and telepathy. He can't read your mind and doesn't like orders so you need to learn how to communicate. It requires going back to the basics because every time you complain, he will hear how not good enough he is and the antagonism there will start another fight.

At this point fights have no beginning or end. It's like every time we try to move forward we continue a fight we had before. The pushing and pulling to see who will give in is getting exhausting. At some point you stop viewing each other as partner and friend, becoming rivals instead. Each party represents their own team which wants to win and prove their superiority.

And no wonder fights are so common. You need to realize you are on the same side. You both want to be happy and make the relationship work. So stop treating each other like the other side and get behind the same oar. It's going to get stormy but knowing you are together in it will make fights a little more bearable. Reassuring each other of how you feel is also nice because beneath all the resentment and hurt, you need to know your partner cares and is bringing up difficult issues so you can sort them out and end up on the same page.

Founder and Editor in Chief of the Readers Cafe Africa

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