An app for couples to get out of arguing by invoking a free pass
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Darko SavicNov 25, 2021
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An app that lets couples get out of arguments with each other by invoking a finite number of free passes. It doubles as an emotional currency exchange. You redeem a free pass from your partner by doing nice things for them.
Instant argument quencher.
Fewer pointless arguments between partners.
For extreme situations where the problem can't be solved by talking.
Partners should be on the opposite sides as little as possible. The idea is to end a big fight before a winner or loser emerges. Both partners should return to the same side as soon as possible and with the fewest resentments.
How it works
Both partners agree to honor the amnesty app no matter what happens. The rules are strict (explained below).
Each partner gets 2 free passes, to begin with.
Invoking a free pass
Invoking a free pass grants the person immediate amnesty and ends the argument, no questions asked. It effectively closes the case with no further discussion - as if nothing happened. It is the angry/sad/disappointed side's responsibility to deal with their feelings and move on without retribution towards the partner that invoked amnesty.
Invoking amnesty transfers the "free pass" to the partner's balance. One of the partners invoked amnesty, so s/he now has one, and his partner has three free passes.
If a free pass is invoked upon you, you must take a few deep breaths and realize that the argument is over. The case is closed, and nothing else associated with it matters.
The free pass covers the entire situation.
The partner invoked amnesty and should feel no wrath. You can take a walk to relax and deal with your emotions however you like. There should be absolutely no consequences for the partner. No display of dissapointment, anger, resentment, etc. It's a total reset.
The partner that invoked it loses its free pass, while the other partner gains one.
Free passes are a form of emotional currency between two partners. The person that runs out of free passes can try to earn them by doing nice things for their partner. "What can I do for you to earn one back?"
People in the comments section expect that this app would prevent important conversations between partners from taking place. To this I say: If someone uses the app to avoid uncomfortable conversations, do you think it would be beneficial for the relationship if you forced them to have said conversations anyway?
In the analogy of a ship: The app keeps the (relation)ship from sinking because people on it are prevented from throwing hand grenades at each other.
Everyone decided that they wanted to be on the ship a long time ago. They have a choice to disembark at every port. The app just prevents a rough ride while the ship is sailing. The right to disembark is the only right you should have in a relationship. Everything else should require mutual consent between partners. You shouldn't get to force your partner into uncomfortable situations they can't get out of. The app is their "get out of uncomfortable situation while not opting to disembark the ship" option.
In summary, the app achieves the following:
You don't get to corner the partner into uncomfortable situations
You get to make the partner feel good (to earn "free passes")
This has no effect on your right/ability to get out of the relationship. This is the only thing you should be able to do without your partner's consent.
Maybe this app could help you learn what situations are uncomfortable to your partner and trigger their defenses. By adjusting your approach to conversations, you can avoid cornering your partner.
If I invoke both my free passes (or whatever number I initially start with), how do I gain more? I understand the "making the partner feel good" thing to gain a free pass. However, if I invoke a free pass in an argument where my partner was hell-bent on finishing the argument (for whatever reason there may be), will my partner "feel good" and grant a free pass the next time? I see the battle switching from real arguments to gaining and receiving free passes, then. There should be a concrete way to gain free passes, ones that are not dependent on emotions and grudges or the outcomes of past arguments.
Also, one of the partners will be the one using significantly more passes than the other. The partners may not be equal or similar with respect to arguments. There can be numerous reasons for this - the partner is not good at explaining themselves, the partner loves the other so much that they decide to not talk stuff that makes the other sad or angry, the partner has insecurities (of losing the partner, etc.) that discourages them from participating in the argument, the partner is just a bad partner and does stuff in the wrong way, etc., and that partner will be the one using more free passes. That means that partner needs to earn more free passes. Will the other pissed-off partner grant those passes?
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A few thoughts
Darko SavicJan 22, 2022
I was thinking... A few people replied that they think this is a bad idea because things should be talked over and smoothed out, otherwise all the unsolved problems amass and take a toll on the relationship.
Sure, in the beginning, people naturally strive to talk things over and iron out the problems.
I propose that every relationship problem that gets solved by talking, results in one of the partners receiving a lesson and the other giving it. The end result is a slightly more restrictive relationship.
"Ok, my bad, I won't do this anymore"
"I didn't know you feel this strongly about it, I will try harder"
After a while of adapting and taking on more and more restrictions, some things begin to slip by. Eventually one of the partners has to stand their ground and not compromise on things they can't agree with. As time passes, more and more such situations arises. These are the problems that cannot be talked over. So does this mean the relationship is doomed? Not necessarily.
Agree to dissagree
If people love each other and collaborate well on common grounds. They could just accept the fact that they are never going to surmount their differences. And that's ok. If your partner's life is better because you are in it, and vice versa, then that could be enough.
The above mentioned app would be helpful in making such a relationship more pleasant.