No matter what kind of relationship you have, (friends, colleagues, acquaintances, siblings, lovers, spouse….. yeah, that goes on awhile) you will have conflict. It might be big, it might be small. It might be rare, it might be constant. It might be somewhere in between, but it’ll always happen.

How you handle conflict says a lot about your character, and your mindset. How you handle conflict with me tells me how long we’ll be in each others’ lives.

I messaged back and forth with a lady last week, we set a time, date, and place to meet halfway between us (we live about 100 miles apart), and I was left waiting for a response to my last message after we made plans. We had five days from making the plans to execution, so I waited. I sent another message on day meet -4, and another on day meet -2; I got no response.
On meet day, I sent a message about 8 hours before we were supposed to meet, saying that I hadn’t heard anything in response, and I would not be heading down to (town redacted) to meet that night. The reply I got was one of evidence and facts being launched at me, threats of screenshots, and obvious anger. That last part of that response was enough for me to decide to pull back, and keep my distance. The following three responses pushed me from stepping back a bit, all the way to saying goodbye and blocking the woman. I understand she was upset, I understand she was unsure, and I understand she was confused, but, she didn’t present herself as someone who wished to sort out the details. She presented herself as someone who wanted to show she was right (and me as wrong), that she was much better than I was, and who the hell am I to say such stupid things?!?!

A small misunderstanding, that could (and should!), have been handled with some conversation led to a big blowout, a cancelled date, and a bad taste for dating (mostly on her part, my system weeds out the rotten apples), which i’m sure she’ll be stewing on for time to come.

The moral of this is this: When you don’t understand, don’t attack; ask. Don’t assume anything, ask. Don’t make it about right and wrong, ask, converse, and seek to understand.

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