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TMFDocumama wrote:

Now, every day, I wear a reminder of how important it is to negotiate in marriage and how nice it is to make sure you both get your own way from time to time. :)

These past few days I've been asking for, and getting, advice. I've gotten some unsolicited advice. I've been reading the marriage threads over on LBYM. And I've been very disturbed by all of the above. I'm beginning to see why divorce is so common. That's why I liked the above comment so much.

My mother loves giving advice. Most of it isn't worth much, but every once in a while she inadvertantly throws out a gem. One of these was marriage advice (my parents have been married 36 years, and don't hate each other... :-))--she said she always put her husband first, even before her children. I know in today's child- and me-centric world that sounds like blasphemy. Some would say it sounds like codependency. What they don't understand is that in a healthy relationship the other person will have the same attitude.

I honestly can't believe some of the advice I've gotten. My fiance isn't the neatest person, so on another board I asked for advice in dealing with this. More than one poster actually told me I should pick up his stuff and throw it away. One piece of unsolicited advice I received after commenting his finickiness was to fix my own meals, and to hell with him--let him scrounge his own dinner. Now, those are things I might try with a child, but not with an adult whom I love and want to treat with respect! And I would certainly not want that treatment should the tables be turned.

(A side note on the cleaning bit: yesterday morning I woke up to find that during the night our evil cats had gotten up on the counter--which they know is off-limits--to retrieve what I thought was an empty fountain pen ink cartridge. Well, it wasn't as empty as I thought--there was black ink smeared all over the floor. So I put "mop the floor" on my after-work to-do list. Well, when I got home, I looked at the floor and, to my astonishment, it was clean. My fiance had come home at lunch and cleaned it for me--without me asking!)

So what I'm taking a long time to say is that we need to treat our SOs with the same respect we want to be treated with. I think this is what's missing in so many relationships--the partners don't treat each other as equals, or with love and respect. I also think it's important to expect the best from your partner, rather than the worst. No one wants to be presumed guilty and have to prove their innocence.

Well, I guess that's enough mindless rambling for a Friday afternoon...
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