It might sound idiotic, but when my wife puts an ultimatum during an argument it just burns me like hell!!!! It’s a treat!!!
An ultimatum can be defined as:
a final demand or statement of terms, the rejection of which will result in retaliation or a breakdown in relations.
The use of ultimatums during an argument can be dramatic but will almost always have a negative effect on both partners. It tends to force the partner into a corner, with pressure and type of punishment, for example:
- “You don’t want to do things I love to do, this is the last time I will ever try to share something with you”
This kind of ultimatum started with a legitimate desire: I want to spend time with you.
The problem is how that desire is presented. It appears threatening. It forces the recipient into a defensive posture. It defines that the person is a failure and not prepared to provide the desire.The worst part about ultimatums is that sometimes the recipient desires the same outcome as the person issuing the demand, but the ultimatum feels so aggressive that it forecloses the mutual desire. It is possible to provide the same desire without forcing the person into a corner in a more constructive way:
- “It really matters to me that we share our time together and its upsetting I sometimes feel that you really don’t want to”.
It’s important to know that When you start to use ultimatums during an argument, the topic of argument will suddenly disappear. The focus will shift towards the ultimatum. This causes the other person to counterattack or be defensive. This will lead to a long back and forth an argument, getting worse as it goes, and you still didn’t solve the issue that started the argument in the first place. The best solution is to try to find a conclusion that will satisfy both partners through compromise. The problem with compromise is that you are not getting exactly what you want, but it allows you to get what you want partially. Compromises remove resentment, as both parties are left to sacrifice, with no power struggle.
With Love to my Wife!!