TOPICS: At loggerheads

The simple mention of the expression “at loggerheads” is enough to suggest getting into a quarrel over a minor issue, a dispute over a case still pending, or a contest with no clear winner. These can be disruptive and mar an ongoing relationship that is already under stress.

A quarrel can start for no apparent reason leaving one bewildered and in a state of confusion. What one says is likely to be contradicted by the other and develop into a heated verbal exchange. Because the fallout could be serious, a temporary truce could be declared, and the differences ironed out. The need here is to assert oneself without giving the game away. This has a heightening effect and gives a twist to the whole set-up.

While a dispute may lead to legal wrangling with no settlement in the offing. Resolution, if any, could

still be forthcoming, but it is

unlikely to take place immediately.

So the best recourse is not to say or

do anything that could prove detrimental to one’s interests. Provoking the other can only make things worse. Where before there was a pardonable

offense now this does not happen to be true. Whereas in a contest there is no clear winner.

Because of irritants tempers running high, any interaction is difficult. Thus, any disparity is meant to be sorted out for the benefit of the contestants. To be sure, progress made in the right direction proves conclusive even if it is not plain sailing.

Being at loggerheads indicates there is no set rules but only a general idea of what one should do. It proves to be a scary experience at a deeper emotional level. For this is not a game to be played out in all earnestness but only worthy of a passing mention.

There is no guarantee that all those responsible will abide by the rules.

In this regard, fellow feeling is shunted aside if it is a dead giveaway. There

are any number of causes but the first and foremost is a breakdown in communication. Simmering emotions also play a role in this connection and influence a decision.

Trying to appease the other will backfire if there is no response. The next best thing to do is not provoke an already sensitive matter. Seeking assistance will work out if these dovetails with past efforts without breaking into an argument even before frayed nerves have a chance to settle down.