I was super lucky enough to have had a beautiful bridal shower thrown in my honor last week (pictures [and video!] forthcoming), and one of the activities was to write down advice for a happy marriage. There were some interesting and unique tidbits (apparently, my friends are very pro-leg shaving) but by and large, the most-given advice was to never go to bed angry.
In fact, it was even Dear Abby’s single piece of marital advice to a bride today.
So, platitudes aside – is that really good advice? Because I totally disagree.
Sure, I’m not actually married yet, but we’ve been together nine years and I’d say we’re doing pretty good. And yes, we fight. Fairly, and without name calling, but we definitely fight. And I’ve absolutely gone to bed angry. And you know what? I think going to bed angry is a good idea.
Why? Two reasons.
1. The alternative is exhausting. I refuse to see how staying up and fighting or arguing is going to produce anything productive. How long can a fight stay fair if we’re sleep-deprived and worried about getting up in the morning? Are we really going to find a good solution or compromise if we’re tired? Or won’t we just want to end it, and say anything to make it stop?
Or is that the point? That when you are tired, you’ll give in and then it’s done and over? Or is the advice more – just stop fighting, remember you love one another, go to bed and deal with it in the morning? Because that’s all fine and dandy, and I can certainly remember I love this man, but still want to kick him in the shins.
2. Things aren’t as bad in the morning. Of course yeah, sometimes they are. But generally, going to bed angry or annoyed about something stupid? Seems even stupider the next morning. It’s a lot easier to wake up, kiss him good morning, apologize and then start the day. Not every thing needs to be hashed out, and sometimes its easier and smarter to be contrite rather than “right.”
What do you think? Still think not going to bed angry is the right move? Do you practice what you preach?