What Our Arguments Are Really About

The desire to be right is related to the desire for truth. We are truth-seekers. We’ll even make up our own truth. We’ll fill in the gaps with what we want to be true.

We’re not comfortable with being wrong. It makes us feel insecure. We’re insecure because life is fragile and because our understanding of who we are and why we’re here is limited.

When entering into an argument with another person we’re attempting to do two things: teach the other person something, and find out if they have something to teach us. And it often occurs on an unconscious level.

The main thing is we want the other person to understand us. Being understood is a way of feeling that we matter. And it’s a way of attempting to connect with the other person.

If the other person doesn’t meet us there — if they aren’t able to see through our veiled desire, we’ll likely push them away. We might even begin considering them an enemy. But if they are able to meet us there, a connection can be made.

That’s the heart of what human communication is. A search for truth and a desire to connect.