Both dating and marriage relationships include conflict. To some extent, the conflict that occurs within marriage and dating relationships are similar, depending on the intensity and level of commitment of the dating relationship, inasmuch as they may concern sex, religion, politics, jealousy, children, pets, household responsibilities and the in-laws, according to the eHarmony article “9 Things Men and Women Argue About Most.” However, there are particular aspects of these issues that are specific for each type of couple.
Money is touted as one of the hottest topics that couples argue about. Problems arising from the spending of money can begin even before marriage vows are exchanged, according to the WebMD feature “7 Solutions That Can Save a Relationship.” One partner may be concerned about how much money is spent on dates, especially if the couple decides to “go Dutch.” In a marriage, on the other hand, finances are shared. “Your money” becomes “our money.” Arguments arise from either spending too much, or spending too little. Disagreements can also come about when decisions have to be made about savings and investments.
Those Little Dependents
The presence of children and or pets within a household can create conflict. In the event that you are dating someone with children, issues may arise if one partner disagrees with the parenting style of the other, says eHarmony. Arguments can come about if the partner with the child is unable to make a date because it is a school night or no babysitter is available. Within a marriage, having children can be a blessing as well as a source of strife, according to the ForYourMarriage.org article, "Parenting." Common arguments concern whether or not the couple can properly balance personal time with the time they spend with the children, how protective to be, or who has to stay home from work if the child is ill.
Sex is a topic that confronts both dating and married couples. Dating couples usually face conflict over when to start having sex, if any at all, according to the eHarmony article. If one partner wants to hold out until a specified time, such as after marriage, arguments can come about if the other partner is not in agreement. For married couples, the conflict will obviously not surround when to start having sex, but rather, when to have it. Some married couples sometimes have difficulty working sex into their busy schedules. For both dating and married couples, one or both partners may be dissatisfied with some aspect of the sexual portion of the relationship.
Arguments concerning chores within the household is more an issue for married couples than those who are just dating. Dating couples are less likely to share a living space, so have less reason to argue about balance in household responsibilities. In marriage, there is greater likelihood of conflict, where one or both partners feel as if there is an imbalance in the division of work. Resentment arises when one partner is doing the bigger portion of the housework, or feels that the other constantly shirks household duties.