How to Stop the Blame Game in Your Relationship
When you realize that you and your partner spend a lot of time playing the blame game in your relationship, it may be the right time to address this problem, to see what is going on, and to stop it altogether.
It can be a challenge to stop the blame game in virtually any relationship, but it is important to do so for both parties. Most people don’t want to be blamed, whether we did something or not.
What is the blame game
The blame game simply means that one person is blaming someone else for problems or issues that are happening, and they may be blaming the other person that they are in a relationship with.
For example, your partner may blame you for all the money problems you are experiencing, even if they spend as much money as you do. When you are talking about the blame game in relationships, sometimes the person being blamed for the problem may actually be at fault, but in other instances, they may not be.
In other words, when a couple plays the blame game with each other, it may lead to problems because sometimes a person is actually deflecting blame instead of being honest. This can lead to arguments or worse, so you should stop the blame game whenever this is possible.
Related Reading: The Blame Game Is Destructive to Your Marriage
10 ways to stop the blame game in your relationship
Before understanding the ways to stop the blame game, it is essential to know why this problem occurs. Why do partners begin to blame each other instead of trying to resolve the issue:
Think about these 10 ways to stop the blame game to see if they will work well for your relationship.
1. Put yourself in your partner’s shoes
When you are blaming your partner for something, imagine how they feel about the situation. Do you want to be blamed for things, even when you do them?
There’s a good chance that you don’t. So, your partner likely feels the same way. Perhaps there is another way that you can handle the situation besides blaming someone. You should also think about what is going on in your mate’s life.
Maybe they didn’t take out the trash or they forgot to call you because they have a big project at work, or they have a sick family member. Consider cutting your partner some slack sometimes, especially when they are stressed or having a hard time in other aspects of their life.
2. Talk about things
When you are trying to learn how to stop blaming others, you should do your best to talk about things with your mate. If you are able to talk to them about the things that are bothering you or that you dislike, this may be more productive than blaming them.
If someone is telling you to stop blaming me and you haven’t stopped, they may feel like they are being attacked and decide they don’t want to talk to you about certain topics anymore.
Ideally, you should have discussions before this happens, so you will have a better chance of working things out with your partner, no matter what you are blaming each other over.
A 2019 study indicates that people expect someone to shift the blame, so that may not be the underlying problem in your relationship. It is necessary to determine what is, however, so you can continue to work through any issues you are facing.
Related Reading: 4 Relationship Conversations You Can Have With Your Partner
3. Listen to your partner
When you take the time to discuss things with your partner, make sure that you are listening to what they have to say. It isn’t fair if you expect your mate to listen to you and you aren’t doing the same for them.
This is a great way to stop the blame game and may help you see their point of view also. If they are telling you how they feel, remember that their feelings are just as valid as yours. You can decide together how to change your behavior towards each other, in order to fix the problem, not the blame.
4. Focus on the things you have control over
Another thing you can do when you are attempting to stop blaming others for your problems is to focus on the things that you have control over. If you feel like it is your partner’s fault that some things are happening, think about ways you can change this without changing your mate’s behavior.
To accomplish this, you may have to alter the way you are thinking about circumstances. Instead of thinking something like, my spouse is spending all of our money, try to figure out how to start budgeting, so you can make sure you aren’t contributing to bad financial practices.
5. Talk about your roles with each other
Something else you may want to discuss with your partner is what your expectations of each other are. If your roles weren’t fleshed out well at the beginning of the relationship, you should do your best to determine what you want from each other.
There is a chance that your mate doesn’t know that you expect them to stay at home with you on the weekends, or you may not know that your partner likes the way you make sandwiches, so they ask you to make all their sandwiches.
When you are aware of the reasoning behind the things that may lead to the blame game, it can be easier to work through them.
Related Reading: Relationship Advice for Couples Who Are Just Starting
6. Let some things go
After you talk about what you expect from each other, it may be time to let some of the feelings go that you have been experiencing.
If you consider your mate responsible for certain things that have happened in your relationship and you find out that they actually had a good reason for acting a specific way, consider letting some of these hard feelings go.
This may be a large step to help stop the blame game. Moreover, you should understand that some battles aren’t worth fighting. If your mate forgets to flush the toilet sometimes, don’t blame them for this. Just remember that they do this, so you can be prepared each time you enter the bathroom.
There are some things that your partner does that may never change, and you should think about if these things are serious when you consider your entire relationship.
Watch this video for details on why blaming game takes place in the first place:
7. Don’t take it personally
Sometimes you might think that your mate is doing things on purpose to upset you and make you blame them. There’s a good chance that many of the things they are doing that might get on your nerves are either done by accident or absentmindedly.
You can’t expect your partner to know what you want from them unless you express it to them. If you haven’t done that, you shouldn’t take their actions personally unless they are done just to spite you. If you find that they are, you may have larger problems in your relationship.
8. Get help
Once you determine you are unable to stop the blame game, you might want to consider taking advantage of professional help to get to the bottom of things.
In therapy, you and your partner will be able to discuss why they might think don’t put the blame on me, and why you feel that blaming them is warranted, or the other way around.
If your partner is unwilling to go to a counselor with you, you may still be able to see benefits on your own. A therapist can help you learn how to act differently in some situations, and teach you tips on how to listen or communicate more effectively.
Related Reading: 16 Principles for Effective Communication in Marriage
9. Think about your actions
You should always think about your actions as well. Are there things that you should be blamed for that your partner lets slide?
Perhaps you blame your partner even if some things are your fault. If either of these things is true, think about why this is the case. You may be afraid of getting blamed for things, even if they are your fault.
Being afraid to take the blame may be something you need to work out and is another way a therapist can be of assistance too. Take the time you need to think about your behavior to determine if it needs to be addressed and changed or not.
10. Keep going (or don’t)
When you find it next to impossible to stop the blame game in your relationship, you should think about if this relationship is working or not. If you want it to work, do everything you can to work through your issues.
You can start by reading more on the topic of blaming people and how to stop, and also get professional advice when this is necessary.
On the other hand, if you don’t think the relationship should move forward, you may want to think about other viable options. Be honest with yourself and your partner about your decision and keep an open mind.
Consider other ways of handling the situation and if they even need to be worked out in the first place. Are the things that are bothering you a big deal?
Think about all the options you have, if you are doing anything you should be blamed for, or if your relationship could benefit from counseling. All of these things may be able to change how and if you continue to blame each other, which can be a good thing.
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