Written By: Mandy Balak

A word of advice: Keep your dirty laundry at the laundromat.

It’s the same old argument – you know the one.

“That’s it,  I can’t take it anymore!” [You throw your phone across the room. Or at least think about doing so.]

Once phone is retrieved, you call up your best friend for wine night. Once wine is consumed, you go back and forth together, solving all the world’s problems. Especially this one: You’re right and your partner is an asshole. 

But I urge you: Save your breath.

Here’s the thing – your best friend, your mom, your coworker, your sister – they are all probably big supporters of you. But keep in mind that anything you say about your partner, they won’t fully understand, but they will remember.

No one will get the inner workings of your relationship, good or bad. And they certainly won’t like hearing about all the reasons why you aren’t perfect together. (Or maybe they will – perhaps they secretly hate him.) But most likely they are going to tell you what you want to hear. You’ll walk away feeling completely validated.

Yay! Except not.

By throwing your partner under the bus to whoever will listen, you do your relationship a huge disservice because when you do get back on track, it’s harder and harder for the people in your life to trust your partner.  Or, let you get away with staying. Once your mother’s opinion is formed about your significant other, good luck changing it.

So, how do you keep your dirty laundry where it belongs?

It starts with an agreement. Agree that you’ll be open to working through your problems together. If you have a complaint, why not take it to the only person that can actually do something about it? Think about it like it’s your job. Would you complain to a coworker about how you aren’t getting paid enough, or would you sit down with the boss to plead your case?

By recognizing that you will have problems, and that you will never be perfect, you can find peace in knowing that you or your partner won’t have to duck for cover at the next double date or company party.

Yes, venting is healthy and yes, you are entitled to it. But don’t do it just to hear you are right. Be open to communicating all sides, talk to your partner, and if that isn’t good enough – maybe consider getting a pro to help mediate those tough times.

So before picking up the phone and calling your drinking buddy – maybe hit up a workout, get some fresh air or spend a few minutes writing down your feelings. And when you’re ready, make a date to talk to the person who can actually do something about your issue – your partner.

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