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how to: deal with issues

Every marriage is bound to encounter a few bumps along the road, especially when you're first starting out. We're here to help you out with solutions to couples issues and common newlywed arguments. First, find out about the tried-and-true stuff your parents probably wish they'd known. We've sorted out the newlywed "rules" you can ignore from the relationship mistakes you need to avoid. Learn the right way to handle a fight and the solutions to the most common newlywed arguments. We've also got help for couples issues that are specific to the modern marriage. For example, the four rules of Facebook for couples, how to deal when you're married to a metrosexual, and handling coworker crushes. You can also read our expert Q&A for dealing with all kinds of couples issues. Find tips on making friends as a couple, managing work stress as a pair, and avoiding common newlywed arguments about stuff like cleaning and entertaining. We'll help you solve issues with everyone -- your honey, your couple friends, your in-laws -- and find solutions that work in every part of your life, from the bedroom to the office. From whether it's okay to tell friends about your issues to breaking out of a sex rut, we've got you covered. And don't forget your fellow Nesties! We've pulled together lists of real couple gripes and likes, Nesties' marriage secrets, and their most ridiculous fights -- you're sure to relate to something! Or find even more sympathetic ears with our relationships message board.

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4 Secrets to a Hotter Relationship

Take your twosome from simmering to smokin’.

Take your relationship from simmerin' to smokin' with these tips.

1. Flirt like it’s your first night together.
Think back to those early days of dating. Every laugh, lingering look, or under-the-table leg brush was a guaranteed goose bump-giver. Well, you can turn back the clock to that supercharged state by making a simple shift: Start flirting again. If you’re at a party, slink away, get a couple of drinks, and flirtatiously introduce yourself like you’re strangers. It may take him a second to catch on, but once he does, it’ll set a sexier tone for the rest of the night -- and remind you both that there’s still a lot to discover about each other.

2. Make your significant other do a double-take.
That’s one of the brilliant things about being a couple -- being so at ease in each other’s company. But there’s a line between being comfortable and letting yourselves go. (Hint: If you frequently show up to the dinner table in sweaty gym gear or go to bed with zit cream and prickly cactus legs, you’re guilty as charged.) Break out that lingerie crammed in the back of your drawer. Wear something backless. Shave and put on a nicer shirt than usual when you go out to dinner. It’s about showing your significant other that they’re still worth looking sexy for.

3. Try something new (channel surfing doesn’t count).
You love your routine, so why mess? Well, shaking things up every once in a while keeps the zsa-zsa-zsu in your relationship. According to a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, couples who participated in activities that they both considered highly exciting but moderately pleasant had a bigger boost in satisfaction than those who did activities that were highly pleasant but moderately exciting. Check out a concert you’d never think to get tickets for, or explore a totally different part of town. The adrenaline rush will be an aphrodisiac.

4. Pounce…even when you’re not in the mood.
Skipping the most intimate act you two could possibly enjoy together, you’re not doing your relationship any favors. Here’s why: Intercourse and orgasms trigger oxytocin, the “love hormone,” to be released in your bodies, which makes you feel incredibly fused as a couple. Sex is also the gift that keeps on giving: The more you do it, the more you’ll want to do it, so it actually stokes desire. So set that alarm clock a little earlier for wake-up action, and put down that pint of mocha pecan postdinner and enjoy another kind of bedroom treat (better yet, bring in the ice cream too). You don’t need Olympic-level performances -- just enough enthusiasm to get that mojo going.

Nestpert Patti Britton, PhD, certified sex therapist and author of The Idiot’s Guide to Sensual Massage

-- Riann Smith