Interpersonal conflict is an emotional experience where we feel that our needs, values or sense of identity is being threatened or undermined by the behaviour of someone else. It is quite common for us to experience conflict internally, without the other person even knowing they’ve caused it.

A Dispute is what happens when a conflict is externalized, the other person becomes aware of it and rejects the victim’s perspective. Disputes can play out in many ways.

  1. One or both parties refuse to speak to each other (avoidance).
  2. A confrontation, or series of confrontations take place.
  3. They say hurtful things about the other person to their peers, hoping to win favor and alienate the other person.
  4. Or one or both sides can have a reasonable conversation about what the other person did that upset them, and invite sharing of perspectives to gain understanding.

Guess which method is preferable?


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