In making my Purchases I will NOT compromise on list, I thought about how much getting the bigger bed had a great bonus – it also made for a much happier couple. A better nights sleep = less needless bickering the next day (see #2). So was born this new list, although they literally may not translate into something that will help your relationship, it will hopefully get you thinking a bit. 🙂
1. Separate Toothpaste
One argument I was so incredibly sick of having was about the toothpaste. He has a habit of leaving the cap off which drives me insane. No matter how much I tried to drill it into his head, he’d forget more often than not. Then I realized a simple solution! Separate toothpastes! He has his, I have mine. Not only is this fantastic for the cap situation, we both get the brand we like.
2. A Bigger Bed
Sure, when our relationship was young – sleeping with less than an inch between us was cute and romantic. We would sleep for hours and it never seemed to bother us. However, over the years with children, I have developed a high sensitivity to noise and touch while I slept, especially when our 2nd was born. I would jolt awake if his leg touched mine, thinking our son was out of bed. If he rolled, I would have to shhhh him to see if I could hear the baby. I’d blame my awful sleep on him, which wasn’t fair. We’d pick fights for no reason after a particularly rough night.
The Solution: A bigger bed! I love my husband but I need my sleep and we both get exactly that in our big bed. We even have room in the middle for a child or two if needed. I can stretch out as much as I want. My hubby can pull his knees up to his chest if he wants to. When he rolls, it doesn’t wake me. No more grouchy mornings. We love our bed.
3. Sleep-in Schedule
Everyone likes to sleep in occasionally. With young kids that’s pretty difficult. Their internal clock doesn’t recognize the weekend and they are still up at 6:30am wanting to eat and play. Hubby isn’t the best morning person when he first gets up so if I kick him and say “can you get up with them”? he grumbles and when he’s in a mood, he tends not to be very quiet while he’s getting up, which then fully wakes me and so I might as well have gotten up in the first place.
Waiting until the kids come into your bedroom to decide who is getting up with them is a bad idea. So instead we use a sleep-in schedule on the weekends. We decide ahead of time, who gets to sleep in each day. This way, we both get one morning a week to sleep. The deal is that you get to sleep as long as you want (provided we don’t have to be anywhere). So maybe you’ll only sleep an extra hour, maybe 3 hours. The point is that when it’s pre-determined, hubby doesn’t groan when it’s his turn and I don’t feel like I never get to sleep in. On his mornings, he even thinks of me ahead of time. He sets his alarm to go off about 10 minutes before the kids will get up, which gives him time to get out of bed and stop the kids at the door before they come to me.
4. Support Their (crazy) Ideas
Stop the unnecessary arguing. We ALL think that we are right pretty much all the time. Unfortunately, we don’t all think the same so what I think is a crazy, dumb or guaranteed-to-fail idea, may seem genius to my husband. It took me awhile and many arguments to learn this lesson. When he comes to me with a big smile and an even bigger idea, I used to immediately look for the flaws in the plan. (Basically I’d stomp on his new dream with cleats on my feet). Not productive and a huge blow to his confidence and ego. Or it could start one of those gigantic arguments where in the end, you have no idea what started it.
The reality is, we are partners, best friends… and no matter what, we should be supporting each other. For every idea that comes out of his mouth, he only attempts maybe 1/5 of them. Sometimes him sharing the idea is simply talking through an idea and he may come to the conclusion on his own that it’s not worth the time. When he attempts his idea, maybe I will think it’s silly. Maybe I will know in my mind that it will fail completely. However, I am going to support him 100% and hope to be surprised when the outcome is not what I expected. If it does fail, then there’s no “I told you so” since I kept my big mouth shut and instead I can just listen if he wants to talk about it or act like the idea never happened if he doesn’t want to mention it ever again.
If you don’t support him and end up crushing this idea, then you will have to wonder if, for many years ahead, will he look back and think “what if”? You don’t want to be that person.
5. Gifts Don’t Necessarily Come From The Store
Some men bring you flowers. Some men buy you candy. My man cleans and builds me things. Sure, I haven’t had a flower delivery in about 8 years but I lose count thinking of the countless things my hubby has made me or done for me in that time. I admit, it took me awhile to put 2 & 2 together… I used to hint about flowers and he’d make comments like “but they die” and I’d watch romantic movies longingly wondering when my man would take me to an expensive dinner or whisk me away to Paris. As I’ve learned over the years though, not all men think the same.
Mine thinks more in the long term. He knows that in a year, I am probably not going to remember much about some flowers but I will be able to take a look at the huge pantry he built me and know that he loves me. I will be able to look at the walls in our bedroom and know that even though he bit his tongue when I showed him the colour I loved, he painted it and has not once complained because he knew it made me happy. The gift he gives me over and over again is happiness and that lasts a lot longer than a vase full of roses. Sometimes we have to read between the lines… when you think your partner isn’t being romantic, look deeper because I bet you’ll see a lot more than you thought!