Calling the other person bad names during an argument is demeaning. Disrespect can quickly turn a relationship cold and can accelerate similar behavior in turn. Before long, courteous respect is replaced by behavior that continues to cause the relationship to spiral downward out of control. When we speak without respect to a partner in front of others as I witnessed at the restaurant, it causes resentment and animosity. That is the kind of animosity that is tough to forget (and forgive.) Once established, such precedence is difficult to reverse. In fact, this sort of sloppy communication is contagious. When practiced by one partner, it will soon certainly be adopted by the other. A downward spiral of ineffective, disrespectful communication is sure to follow, damaging the relationship and destroying the bond between the partners.
Toxic communication also destroys relationships. This includes lying, hiding the truth, deceptive behavior, insulting insinuations, cursing, or otherwise speaking or acting without respect and transparency. We all interact with each other’s energy, so we tend to give back what we receive. It helps the relationship when thoughts, intentions, words, and actions are based in love and concern for the other person. When negative, mean, or destructive motives are part of our interactions, our partners are sure to pick up on our intentions.
As human beings, everyone can occasionally lose control and communicate in a manner that does not support a strong and loving relationship. The answer is…you catch yourself in that moment, apologize for your failure and commit to your partner not to do so again.