Constant bickering between husband and wife certainly doesn’t make for a happy marriage.
Having said that though, if you want to prevent problems between you and your husband from happening in the future, you should take note of certain things in your relationship that need to be discussed — things that you should “fight” about.
So what exactly are these fights that you should pick with your partner… and how can they actually improve your relationship?
The fight: “You only show affection when you want sex”
Women love being loved and this doesn’t necessarily equate to having sex all the time. That’s why, if your husband only brings out the flowers, hand-holding, kisses and hugs when he wants some action in bed, you may end up feeling like you’re being used. In the long run, his sex-driven moves may actually kill the mood as you might find yourself tensing up when you see him coming.
Experts suggest that the solution to this problem is to designate some nights as ‘sex-free’ times when you shower each other with affection — with no strings attached. Express your need for physical connection outside of the bedroom and explain that, sometimes, all it takes is a hug or a look from him to make you feel cherished.
The fight: “You’re always on your phone!”
After a long day at work away from each other, you want to talk with your husband and not have to compete with Angry Birds or e-mails for his attention.
While it’s easy to lose it and turn this issue into a full-blown fight, take a deep breath and calmly say something like, “If we’re talking and you’re constantly on your phone, it feels like I don’t matter to you.”
Or you could both agree on a ‘no-phone’ time, such as during dinner, when you are chatting about your day, or when you’re watching TV together.
The fight: “Don’t undermine my authority in front of the kids!”
It’s tough to be taken seriously when your husband constantly overrules your decisions in front of the kids. It could be as simple as him letting your kids have 15 minutes more TV time when you have asked them to go to bed.
The problem here is, if it’s done often enough, the kids will catch on and start to realize that they can get away with certain things. Put it out there that if one of you makes a decision regarding the kids, the other must respect it and support whoever made the decision.
While it’s perfectly natural to have differing parenting styles, discuss your differences when the kids are not around. In front of them, stand united. If your partner is not around to check on something, hold off making a decision till you can discuss the matter with each other.
The fight: “You work all the time!”
It’s true that in this tough job market, most husbands work extra hard to stay in their bosses’ good graces. Or he could just really loves his work. Whatever the reason, all this work on your husband’s part may have you feeling lonely because you barely see him.
So what do you do? You start a fight and tell him how awful it is that he has to work so much.
Experts say that when you tell your husband to “stop working so much,” what he’s probably going to hear is, “You don’t respect all the work I do to provide for the family.”
Instead of picking a fight along these lines, try telling him how much you miss him. You should also talk about what you can do so you can spend more time together.
These could be simple but significant things such as waking up a bit earlier than you normally do to have coffee and breakfast together, going to the gym together, or having regular ‘date nights’.
The fight: “You can’t let your family/friends treat me like that”
It’s almost inevitable that your in-laws or your hubby’s friends will offend you at some point, and your partner’s failure to stand up for you may leave you very angry. But the thing is, your husband may not even know why you’re so angry.
If you’re in this situation, experts recommend taking a deep breath, sitting down with your partner and explaining to him why his family’s/friends’ actions annoyed you so much.
Then discuss how you can avoid such situations in the future. For example, if your mom-in-law has a knack for criticizing your parenting method in front of the family, ask your husband to bring it up with her in private.
The fight: “You’re always complaining”
Sure, you’re your husband’s soul mate and partner so of course he can talk to you about issues he may have at work or with life in general. However, when he goes on and on every day, his complaints can easily suck the joy out of your relationship.
Experts say that when your husband starts complaining, listen to him attentively for a few minutes. After he has his say, point out the bright side of things and tell him it’s time to talk about something else.
The fight: “You spend too much!” or “You’re too cheap!”
Money issues are often the root cause for many arguments between spouses. But before you get into a huge fight about spending, try and understand your spouse’s motivation. Experts say spenders may want to enjoy their hard work while savers like to feel financially safe.
Regardless of the money matter that is important to you, don’t keep it bottled up. Experts advise that while you shouldn’t go on about money-related decisions made in the past, you and your partner should still make rules for the future.
You could agree that you’re both free to spend what you like every month — up to a certain amount. Beyond that, you must consult your partner.
The fight: “I feel like it’s all on me, all the time!”
Whether you’re a working or stay-at-home mom, the reality is that household chores still need to be done. Doing chores all by yourself (especially if you don’t have a helper) can leave you feeling physically exhausted for obvious reasons, and mentally exhausted because you’re mad and thinking your hubby doesn’t care about you because he doesn’t chip in.
However, experts say this is probably not how he views it, and that women often have a tendency to put the burden on themselves and take things too personally. So if you are feeling unsupported when it comes to household chores, speak up about it before you really start resenting your partner.
Remember to start the discussion when your stress levels are low, and be specific about your needs. Try saying, “It would help me if you could take care of these 3 things without me having to remind you.”
If he forgets, remind him gently (but firmly!). Even though you may think you shouldn’t have to make such simple (and obvious!) requests, in reality, some spouses do need a nudge every now and then!
The fight: “You need to see a doctor!”
We all know that men in general have doctor-avoidance issues. Many of us may have even had arguments with our husbands about their reluctance to see the doctor about health issues. The advice from experts is not to give up on your doctor-fearing hubby. Rather than fight about it, try and figure out why he is so reluctant.
Experts say people often ignore health concerns because they don’t know how to handle bad news if they get it. This may also be the case with your husband, so ask him if that’s the problem and then do some research on treatments for the health problems your partner fears the most.
Next, make it clear to him that you’re only picking this fight for his well-being. Tell him how much you love, need and care about him and want him to stick around for the long haul. He really can’t argue with that!
Article originally published on: theAsianparent.com
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