Looking in at other people’s relationships is like checking out a brand-new apartment. The floors are freshly polished, the kitchen is squeaky clean and there’s not a single scuff mark on the walls. Spend a week in Get over it
the place, however, and you’ll find cracks in the molding and a strange smell coming from under the fridge. Basically: Nothing is ever as perfect as it seems, including your couple friends who seem to have unlocked the secret to marital bliss, so try to stop comparing your relationship or at least try to understand why theirs is bugging you.
What gets you: They equally share all the cooking and cleaning (he even takes out the garbage with a smile—gag!).
: If it’s really annoying to you that your friend’s guy happily scrubs the kitchen after making a delicious soufflé, then clearly your husband isn’t doing those things. But have you ever considered your approach? Nagging him for not hanging up his coat after he unloaded the dishwasher isn’t going to get you anywhere. Instead, thank him for taking care of the dishes and let the coat go. Also, don’t freak out if he does a chore differently than you would or accidentally throws a red shirt into your load of whites. Chances are, he’ll be more willing to help around the house if you stop cracking the whip (besides, it’s a little psycho to cry over pink socks). What gets you
: They never fight—not even over the remote. Get over it
: Fighting doesn’t have to be a bad thing, as long as you aren’t nasty toward each other and are able to come up with solutions that satisfy both of you. In fact, research shows that some couples are energized by healthy, verbal arguments. If your friend brags that she and her husband never fight, chock it up to this: She’s trying to prove something to herself. It’s also possible she wishes her husband paid more attention to her, or she’s jealous of your relationship (who knew?) and wants to impress you. What gets you
They have the perfect house, dog and shiny car. Getover it
: It’s easy to get jealous when your friends are living the high life in a luxury loft and you’re still saving up to buy a place (doesn’t help that their BMW is staring you in the face before you even get to the front door). The trick here is to keep those feelings in check. Try to be happy for your friends. If they’ve put themselves in a financial position you’d like to be in, ask them how they snagged such a great place and what their starting point was. They might be willing to share investing tips or give you the scoop on where to get the best real estate deals. Just, uh, don’t steal their cute pug on the way out the door. What gets you
They work out together and have the killer bodies to show for it. Get over it
: Hitting the gym with your spouse can be a really great way to spend time together and tighten up those abs—but you should do it for you, not to compete with your friends. Start by finding a fun activity
that you both like. If your husband’s into golf, join him on the green, or if yoga’s your thing, invite him to a beginners class (promise that you’ll wear spandex—it helps!). If you’re not particularly active now but want to be, start by going for half-hour walks together in the morning or after dinner. Just being outdoors will help energize you. Oh, and don’t forget to compliment each other on visible results! What gets you
They have sex five times a week. Get over it
: How do you even know this? Bragging about your sex life is about as tacky as a polyester jumpsuit, so brush off your friend’s tell-all policy. If you’re cringing because you wish your sex life was better, heat things up by showing more enjoyment (let out some more moans and groans), being truly present (read: not making a mental grocery list while he’s kissing you) and trying new things (use your imagination). Also, add suspense! Get him going by sending sexy texts during the day. What gets you
They can’t keep their hands (and lips) off each other. Get over it
: Okay, so nothing’s more annoying than going out to dinner with a couple who practically rounds second base while you’re trying to swallow your sushi. But just because they feel the need to, um, express themselves doesn’t mean they’re more in love. You’d be surprised how many couples are all hot in public and subzero in private. When it comes to your relationship, consider why you want your spouse to be more PDA-friendly. Is it because you want to be closer, or do you just want to put on a show for your friends? For true intimacy, make small gestures at home, such as holding his hand while you watch TV or giving him a backrub at the end of a long day.
Nestpert: Noelle C. Nelson, PhD, love guru and author of the new book Your Man Is Wonderful
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