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  • Ray St-Amour

Do you have my back?

Often couples get into arguments without knowing the cause and how it happened. Words like “ you didn't take my side” and “you embarrassed me” may come up. There is a secret that I will share with you: always have your partner’s back. Even if you do not agree with them.

You may say, if I support them in something I don’t approve of, am I not lying? The answer is in the words you use. For example, if you partner says “ I got in trouble with the boss because my report wasn’t finished on time” your impulse may be to say “What? You didn’t finish that report? Of course you got in trouble!” Or “ it’s your own damn fault”. However, I want you to think deeper. What is your partner looking for when they are telling you this? Support of course! Would it be lying if you said “That must have felt terrible!”, or “I’m sorry that happened”. You are not lying to your partner. You are having their back.

When you are with friends and family the same type of situations can happen. This often happens with child rearing and parents or in-laws. For example your mom is criticizing something about your partner’s parenting style. What should you do? The answer should be obvious: have your partner’s back. You could say “Mom, I know you feel strongly about this but this is our child and I support my partner’s parenting style”. Feel free to also put a stop to the discussion if it is going in a negative area. Agree to disagree. For example you could say “Dad,, we will never see eye to eye on this so let’s just drop the subject”. The plan would be to change the topic of conversation.

You are making a life with your partner. You want them to have your back. Make sure to have theirs. This will help your relationship stay stronger and healthier.

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