Communication is the foundation of any good marriage. When you're with someone day in, day out, for years on end, issues are bound to crop up. If you think a topic warrants a discussion, you should absolutely feel comfortable discussing it with your husband. But when it comes to certain hot-button issues, like friends, weight and the bank account, you might want to tread lightly. From serious to silly, here are nine things you should probably never say to your husband.
1. "I hate your best friend."
Even if you have a beef with his obnoxious best friend, odds are they've got quite the history. Think how you'd feel if your husband despised your BFF—and made that known. If he (or she) isn't your favorite person but is harmless enough, suck it up for the sake of their friendship. If you make sure they get plenty of buddy time by not getting jealous when they go watch a game, you won't be forced to spend too much time with him and odds are you'll be able to get a pedicure guilt-free. If there are legitimate concerns, like said friend still likes to bar hop while you prefer your hubby be home, air those concerns without making it personal.
2. "Ryan Gosling is hot." (for the hundredth time)
Hubby probably didn't mind the first few times you gushed about how hunky you find Ryan Gosling. But he doesn't need to see you fanning yourself every time you see a preview with your favorite Hollywood hunk. Besides, you know he finds Jennifer Lawrence drool-worthy, but you don't need to hear it every time you see her flash on the screen, do you?
3. "I hate when you..."
Oftentimes it's not what your complaint is but how that complaint comes across when you air it that gets a conversation off to a bad start. Starting out with "hate" is a surefire way to put someone on the defensive. Likewise, accusing someone of "always" or "never" doing something is a confrontation waiting to happen. "This bothers me" comes across less harshly and positions you both to discuss the situation than any of those other loaded words.
4. "Is your hair thinning?"
He has a mirror. He has eyes. Odds are, he knows if his once-thick locks aren't quite as luxurious as they once were. Don't mention it unless he specifically comes to you seeking advice. If he is insecure about it, mention Bruce Willis. Hello, hottie!
5. "You need to start working out." & 6. "You need to lose weight."
Whenever weight is an issue, the person bringing up the topic needs to be sensitive to the other. It's fine to be concerned about a partner's weight gain and to broach the subject, but to spout directives as to what they "need to do" to take care of the problem could open up a can of worms and make you come across as bossy and controlling. Instead, you could mention that you've noticed that he has gained a few pounds and you've been trying to figure out how you can get more active or eat healthier meals. Make it a partnership of support, rather than weighty accusations for a much smoother conversation. Learn more about helping the people you care about get healthy.
7. "That's all you ran/lifted/worked out?"
Don't belittle someone's efforts; be glad they're making an effort to work out and get healthy (and likely, look good for you)! A simple "way to go!" gives encouragement to your partner's efforts.
8. "I wish you made more money."
He probably wishes that, too. And likely, I bet he wishes you made more money as well. Saying something like this is only going to discourage him and make him feel inadequate. Instead, take responsibility yourself. Money can be a big area of contention in a relationship, but saying something like "I'm going to ask for a raise; I think you should too" or "Let's take a look at our budget to see if we can make any cuts" gets to the heart of the matter without being accusatory or belittling.
9. "We are not buying that."
Most couples have money rules they follow, like not making big purchases without involving the other person. If he's looking at the newest big screen TV or smartphone but hasn't broached the subject and had a serious purchasing discussion, he's likely in the early stages of dreaming about that object of his affection. Let him look and enjoy the idea rather than crushing his technology (or other "toy") dreams. If he truly wants it, he'll bring it up—and you can discuss it then.
Have you learned from experience something you'll never—ever—say to your husband again?
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