Too Snippy in Your Relationship? Cut it Out!

Too Snippy in Your Relationship? Cut it Out!

BEING SNIPPY is something that all of us have been at some time or another. We find ourselves in a hurry and don’t take the time to stop and explain clearly. Instead we just speak or answer back quickly, and often with a nasty tone. Or we voice disapproval, impatience, or even anger, without any regard for the person we are directing it toward. We’ve all seen other people do it. We’ve all enjoyed using it against injustice. And we’ve all seen the damage it can do in a relationship.

Being snippy. Does it serve a purpose? Is it what we really want to communicate? Is it how we want to treat our loved ones, or be treated? Most likely, we would all answer no to the questions posed. And yet, not only does this behavior continue, but we tend to do it most often in our most intimate relationships.

Why is this behavior so prevalent and what can we do about it?

Often we act in a snippy and disregarding manner, or use a tone of voice that has that edge of disdain or impatience to it, because we are in a hurry. We feel secure enough that we feel we can speak curtly or without regard for feelings because we are letting off steam, under time pressure or just plain annoyed.

In our most intimate relationships we feel safe and loved, and ironically, this often leads us to display this behavior more often because we feel that our partner should accept all of us, good and bad. But this does not translate into carte blanche to assail our partner. A partnership should be two people navigating the world together, but when we snipe at our partner, we have made it one person against the world instead.

We’ve all been snippy in a relationship. Why, & what can we do about it? #relationships #quote Click To TweetBeing snippy is not a full-frontal assault, but it’s an attack all the same. It blames our partner for something, usually in an oblique way. It doesn’t create good feelings or make us feel we are on the same side; instead it generates hurt feelings, a defense, or a full-blown argument. It’s a high price to pay for indiscriminate self-expression. Once we begin talking to each other in this manner, it creates a crack in the foundation of the partnership, which can only widen and become more serious with time.

If we have learned this behavior in our parental or early relationships, we may not even realize we are doing it, or how inappropriate and damaging it can be. We may have a long history of trying to make the world the way we want it by being snippy. But the history is not important; how we act today is the only thing that is relevant, and the only thing in our control.

Speak personally about what you are feeling. This changes your communication from an accusation to a revelation, a statement about yourself that is an act of trust and intimacy. You may find this hard to do at first, but by acting differently and achieving better results, you will come to appreciate the benefits of this approach.

We want to be loving with our lovers. We want to be loving and respectful, and most importantly, present in the way we act and speak. When you are present, then you are not mentally rushing to get elsewhere. Stop and listen to yourself. Listen to what you are saying. Are you conveying love and honoring your mate in the way you communicate? Does your tone of voice let them know that both of you are on the same side. Does it communicate your deep feelings and respect for them? Snippiness has no place here.

So, stop and take stock of whether or not how and what you say represents what you want your mate to hear and feel from you. Talk about it together and remind each other in gentle ways of how you want it to be between you. Don’t be snippy; cut it out!

Tell your friends!

4 Comments on “Too Snippy in Your Relationship? Cut it Out!

  1. So important, and well put! I can feel it when it is coming on, that little sarcastic tone and the little passive-agressive jabs I instinctively want to throw to underscore an issue but disguised as a joke or an aside / remark. I think it will be easy for me to install a filter now that doesn’t allow such snips to ever see the light of day! Filter those snips straight to trash or file in “to be discussed later in a thoughtful, loving, and respectful manner”. <3

    • I’ve often realized, a day or a year later, I didn’t behave as I would have liked to. Practice, practice, practice! — Phil

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