I want both of us to be on the same page when it comes to cleaning the house, but he just doesn't follow through on promises. How do I keep this from being a major argument all the time?
When conflict arises in a relationship, there are generally three paths to peace. You can change the behavior (he learns to clean), change your perspective (you get over it) or you leave the relationship (who would leave over a few dirty dishes?).
You could try emphasizing to him in a gentle, kind way about how much it would mean to you for him to chip in. You could also tell him that I said (and this is completely true) that women and men who share household responsibilities tend to have higher sexual satisfaction. You might even turn cleaning into something fun and sexy by taking a page from Christina Aguilera’s marriage and instituting Naked Sundays. Oh, except your naked days might involve doing chores naked together.
If you can’t seem to get him to change, you may need to change your perspective in order to steer clear of arguments. So he doesn’t clean. Are there other things he does that you don’t? Or that he’d be willing to do such as take out the garbage, fix things around the house, keep the car tanks full, or get the oil changed on your car whenever you need it? Might he be more apt to do the laundry? Or could you find it in your finances to hire a cleaning service to come once or twice each month? In marriage, it’s important to choose your battles and get along for as many of your years together as you can. Finding out how to do this is the challenge but it’s worth it.
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