HOW TO SMOOTH YOUR RELATIONSHIP HANG-UPS
● Avoid intimidating, demeaning, lecturing and criticising (ironically, all things I tend to do in my marriage). Every human being wants to be shown enough respect to change. ● Tell your spouse that changing his behaviour will benefit him directly because you will be happier and more relaxed. ● Loading dishwashers turns out to be one of the most fraught household tasks because we fall into three distinctive patterns: ‘Protectors’ carefully load the machine so that all the cutlery is handle up and anything not cleaned properly is immediately hand-washed; ‘Curators’ make sure that the plates are always in size order; and ‘Organisers’ just want to load and unload as quickly as possible. There is no point in arguing who is right or wrong if you are not dishwasher compatible. ● Try not to argue in front of the children but if you do, practise damage control immediately. Explain to your children that adults have strong feelings too, but that you still love each other. ● If you want to avoid divorce or separation look for the good. The smallest gestures, a smile or showing affection, appreciation, even admiration will help increase your ratio of positive to negative interactions and increase your chances of staying together.