It was just your average date night until the conversation topic switched to your in-laws’ upcoming visit and—whoops, your hubby conveniently forgot to mention—extended length of their stay. Now you’re driving home and giving him the silent treatment so hard. Here, how to reset your relationship when you’re still mad.
Force Yourselves to Separate and Review Each Other’s Talking Points
Sure, you’re pi-issed about your spouse’s failure to communicate. But chances are he’s not entirely in the wrong. The plan: Take a physical break from each other (i.e., he retreats to the living room; you to the bedroom) and try to see his side of things in the form of one or two good points he made. (FYI, he needs to do the same.) Then come back together and repeat the other’s perspective, out loud and without eye-rolling.
Allow YOURSELVES TO ’PRESS PAUSE’
Flash back to Marshall and Lily in HIMYM. The worst part about couple fights is often the timing. (How were you supposed to know a big blow-up would happen on the same day as your sister’s wedding or double-date night with your BFF?) Make a pact—and a plan—to allow yourself to press pause on an epic quarrel. In no way are you saying things are resolved, it’s more: Let’s not ruin our fun plans. (If you happen to forget what you were fighting about in the first place, bonus points.)
Have a Go-To Inside JOKE TO USE AS AN ’OUT’
Sometimes the hardest part about resetting after an argument is swallowing your pride long enough to move on. That’s where a joke that consistently makes the two of you laugh is clutch. Maybe it’s a reference to another couple who is always hashing out their fights in front of other people. (“We’re so Greg and Alice right now!”) Or a memory of a crisis comically averted on vacation. (“Pass the Long Island iced tea STAT!”) Whatever the joke—agree to use it when you need a code for surrender. After all, protecting each other’s egos is part of a solid relationship, even when you’re bickering about the in-laws.