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By Helena Andrews of The Root

A while back, a friend of mine said she doesn’t want to be seen as someone who likes to argue. She’s black, hilarious, a professional, opinionated, owns a home and two dogs.

Because of some or all of those character bullet points, there could be a misperception among men that she (or women like her) likes getting into the ring. The solution, of course, seems simple: Stop arguing. But here’s an even better one: Find someone you don’t have to argue with.

Too often we (or maybe it’s just me) look for someone we like to call a challenge. Having conquered more than a few of them in our daily routines, challenging ourselves in love seems like less of an oxymoron and more like the obvious choice for the self-respecting “successful type.”

Because if everything in your life is (allegedly) desirable and hard-won, then the way to someone else’s heart should be too, right?

Following that logic, making the announcement, as another friend of mine did recently, “I just like assholes,” is seen as a declaration of your commitment to hard work. But it’s just plain ol’ dumb. We’ve conditioned ourselves into thinking that anything worth having is worth fighting for. Unfortunately, anything written on one of those self-esteem posters found in school nurse offices isn’t any way to live your life.

It’s when “keeping you on your toes” goes wrong. I dated a guy once whom I “danced” with constantly.

We fought over how long to leave chicken in the oven. “It’s done.” “Umm no, salmonella, it’s not.” We’d argue about which way to walk home: “I don’t like how that street smells,” I’d say. “Well, I don’t think that really matters,” he’d reply. Best- (or perhaps worst-) case scenario? We’d walk down our respective streets and meet up at home.

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