The manipulation is simple, but the consequences are complex.
We lament “Why can’t we all just, get along?” and then we proceed to irritate, obfuscate, or deceive the other party.
Then we look at them with Alfred E. Nueman’s famous facial expression and metaphorically shrug our shoulders.
The problem is not “getting along” (whatever that may mean, in whatever context you may place it for your conflict) the problem is that resolution is a chimera, and managing the other party in conflict is emotionally exhausting.
So, we dance the conflict two-step and hope that the other party will dance with us. But the consequences of the dance of avoidance (particularly if avoidance is a baseline rather than a temporary strategy) is that we avoid addressing the things that matter to us. And the months, years, or even decades roll by, and we harden into emotional positions from which we cannot extricate ourselves.
There’s too much cruft around the outsides.
The story that we tell ourselves then falls back to the original lament, the original starting position, and when it’s time to get to resolution (or management) we stymie the other party yet again.
“Why can’t we all just, get along?”
Well…there are reasons…