This week my husband closed a drawer. Stay with me.
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It may sound like the most boring detail ever supplied, but it’s actually momentous and mind-blowing.
In all the years I have known him, he has never, ever, ever closed a drawer before.
When we first lived together, I got used to momentarily thinking we’d been burgled whenever I went in a room after he’d been in it. It’s the thing I ‘remind’ him about most regularly, without doubt.
When I witnessed this miracle, I had an epiphany. Nagging works.
You obviously just have to do it a certain magic number of times and then the other party takes it in. My guess is that this number is well in excess of 486,903,216
Not nagging is the first thing everyone always says when it comes to marriage advice. And here I am, living proof that it’s bobbins.
It’s not the only one, either – when you think about it, all those traditional rules people say you should never break have something in common. They all need to be broken...
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Never go to sleep angry
Ludicrous. Always go to sleep angry. That way either: a) one of you will have forgotten that you were arguing by the time you wake up – so the other is the (secret) uncontested victor or b) both of you will. Either way, the row is over.
Always listen to each other
No. Hardly ever listen to each other. If you always listen, you will have already heard it all. You know those couples sitting in awkward silence in the restaurant? They always listen to each other. Now there’s nothing left to say. Tuning in only every now and then is the best thing you can do for your marriage.
Never say I told you so
If you follow these updated rules it’s fine to say this because the other person’s not listening anyway.
Don’t try to change your spouse
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I mean, if you’re thinking of changing them into a serial killer or a racist, then abide by this. But if you’re trying to change them into a better version of themselves, like someone who closes drawers, for example, ignore this and go for it.
Always be honest
Whoever came up with this rule wasn’t being honest, so we definitely can’t trust them, or it. You would have to be fully insane to always tell the truth to someone who is doing their best to love you. White lies strengthen marriage ties.
Don’t keep score
Half right. You have to be allowed to keep score if you’re winning because otherwise the other party might not know they’re losing.
Share your hobbies
David and Victoria Beckham have been married since 1999 – over four decades in celebrity years. They seem to spend a lot of time on different continents. These two facts cannot be unrelated. You can’t have alone time together.
Choose your battles
This one’s actually OK unless there’s a condition in the small print that prevents choosing all of them.
I already know what my next war will be… the only reason I was sure my husband had closed a drawer was that the bottle-opener he’d used was still on the side above it.
He never puts things back. Once I would have grinned (gritted teeth, obv) and beared it but now I know nagging works? Let me at the lucky fella!