Avoiding Bringing Up the Past in Arguments

  • Avoid Bringing Up the Past in Arguments

Disagreements can be a healthy part of a relationship. No two people are alike and, therefore, we will not always see things the same way. When we disagree, we have the opportunity to express our needs and show our partners how we feel. When we talk about how we see things, we need to use things from the present moment. Avoid bringing up the past in arguments.

Bringing Up The Past In Arguments Does More Harm Than Good


Many people feel that referencing the past, and their hurt will give them a better result in the present disagreement. But, bringing up the past can quickly cause an escalating argument. Trying to recall the past accurately is prone to errors. Over time we easily alter memories. It is human nature to do so. The dispute over telling what you remember as past truth will escalate. Both of you will end up hurting each other verbally and emotionally as you try to win.


Bringing up the past can cause your partner to feel attacked and frustrated. They, in turn, will try to defend themselves. As emotions rise, all logic goes out of the window. No emotionally charged argument has ever managed to resolve anything in the heat of the moment.

If It Is Necessary To Bring Up The Past, You Must Be Very Careful of How You Do It


As you discuss past events, focus on your partner’s feelings. Let them ask questions and answer them as best as you can without shutting them down. You should ask questions about what happened in the past if your partner was involved in the event. Doing so will allow you to connect with them on a personal level. As you do this, you will discover that your relationship grows stronger. You will understand what motivates them and why they behave the way they do.

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Focus on What is Happening Now Instead of Bring Up The Past

Try to stay focused on what is happening now. By avoiding bringing up the past, you will instead give them the chance to voice their opinion about the current situation without feeling that they must defend themselves and, in turn, attack you personally.

Arguments spiral out of control as we become more and more emotionally involved. The higher the emotion, the lower the degree of logic that exists in the argument. The result is that everyone gets hurt.

What If I need to Bring Up The Past

While it is important to avoid bringing up the past, it can be equally important not to disregard an older issue completely. If we are talking about a relationship that has suffered deterioration, it may be necessary to discuss some of the areas that have led to this deterioration.

Importantly if the two of you have resolved some of the issues that caused the relationship to deteriorate, share that.

By bringing up some of the victories from the past, you are putting the current issues to rest for a while and recognising that you can resolve issues. Also realising your past achievements is a powerful builder of self-belief that cannot be applied to finding solutions for your current problems.

After fully resolving any issues in the relationship that led to the deterioration, you must not bring up the past in any way. This will only make you and your partner look as if you want to focus on the pain instead of working towards your future goals for the relationship.

Only focus on a problem long enough to find a solution.

Communication is an essential part of a strong relationship. Communication skills can be learnt and applied throughout your life.

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