When my first husband and I ran into trouble in our marriage we sought out a counselor. He told us the hardest people he ever worked with were the ones who said: ‘my parents never fought.’ Um, well, that would be me. My parents never fought … at least ‘not in front of the kids’. The result: I had no role models for resolving conflict and it scared the bedickens out of me. Avoid. Ignore. Downplay. Wait it out. Leave. Those were my coping strategies.
Today I view conflict quite differently. I’m fascinated by it. It intrigues me. I study it and I’m grateful for it!
Understanding the divine function of conflict has made all the difference.
Conflict serves to show us our Hierarchical Values Systems, point us in the direction of our Purpose, and it illuminates parts of ourselves that we have not yet owned, integrated and loved.
When understood as the relationship building opportunities that they are, conflicts become experiences through which to grow in understanding and appreciation of oneself and the other person. They are absolutely necessary on our evolutionary journey into greater and greater love for ourselves, the people around us and this extraordinary universe in which we live.
“Where there’s no conflict there’s no energy. Where there’s no energy there’s no life.” Carl Jung
To this I will add: “Where there’s no life there’s no love.”