Bee Heard: Why do we argue with the ones we love?

Photo Credit: SAMHSA

The Creator created us all with our own unique ways and differences. We all have different personalities, quirks and of course different triggers and vulnerabilities. And sometimes we don’t share these personal things with our family members and sometimes this can cause or even fuel conflicts. The best way we can avoid some of these conflicts is to be aware of our own differences, take responsibility for them and learn to work effectively with them.

Conflicts can’t be avoided sometimes and that’s okay, but how can we handle it better? Here’s a suggestion, maybe instead of seeing it from a “win or lose standpoint,” how about seeing it from a “two people, shoulder to shoulder standpoint?” Seeing two people who see two different views looking together at the problem. There’s no winner or loser.

Another way to avoid conflict is to stay away from “you” statements and the words “always” and “never.” An example sentence that could cause defensiveness and conflict would be: “You never pick up after yourself.” This statement is very vague and doesn’t tell the other person how you feel, only what you think. Maybe a better way to use this example would be: “After you were in a rush this morning and left your food on the table, it made me stressed because I was in a rush too and I had to clean up, so the cats didn’t get in your food.”

The key is to practice the “X, Y, Z” statements and to calmly explain “when you did X, in situation Y, I felt Z.”

Understanding our past and our family is key.

Our past can also become a trigger and cause conflict as well. It’s good to understand our own past, how we grew up, who we are now, what our values are and what we’re willing to participate in.

Some questions to ask yourself periodically and maybe even journal them:

  • How did our family or any relationship affect our growth?
  • What are our spiritual beliefs and how do we practice them?
  • How do they affect our daily lives and the choices we make?
  • What makes us mad, laugh, cry?
  • What makes us feel better when we are sad? When we’re mad?
  • What are we most proud of?
  • What are our priorities?
  • What are our strengths and weaknesses?
  • How have we made it through severe stresses?
  • How do we recharge our emotional batteries?

We all deserve to know what makes us happy, what makes us sad or mad, and what values we hold. When we know our own selves well, we can avoid some conflicts, but better yet, we know our own issues and how to handle them if they arise.

Sometimes we need help finding out answers to our questions or maybe we’re just looking for ways to handle certain situations, reach out and talk to someone you trust or contact the Southern Ute Behavioral Health Division 970-563-4581 and talk to a licensed therapist.

We all need a little help and guidance sometimes.

For more tips check out

Want to help and be a part of the change?

Looking for community members and youth to join the Prevention Coalition tasked to reduce youth substance usage, eliminate mental health stigma and start the discussion around suicide and prevention.

Upcoming Prevention Coalition Meeting: Wednesday, Feb 26, at the Multi-Purpose Facility. Dinner served at 5:30 p.m., meeting starts at 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Contact Precious Collins, Native Connections Program Coordinator for more information 970-563-2487.

Upcoming Trainings

Speak Now! Community Training: There is no perfect way to talk with your children about alcohol, marijuana, prescription medications and other drugs. But being honest and involved has a big influence on your children. Come learn about how to start the conversation with your children about drugs. Feb. 25 6 – 7:30 p.m. at the SunUte Community Center. Please register with Precious Collins 970-563-2487. Free training, dinner and Active Kid Care provided.

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training: This training is designed to teach parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers, neighbors, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens how to help an adolescent (age 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. March 13th 8am-5pm at the SunUte Community Center. Please register with Precious Collins 970-563-2487. Free training for anyone who works or lives in the Southern Ute Indian Reservation. Light snacks will be provided.

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