Relationships are odd things. Its often the little aggravations that spill over into open angst. I got a very mild hip check last night, one done with a smile and a laugh, but its kept spinning in my own mind.

“Darling, what do I have to do to get you to put the toilet cover down, you never do it.”

Funny, its clearly got to her, but the thing is, I almost always put it down. For some reason, that night, I’d got distracted and left the cover up. Mind you, we’re talking the cover, not the seat. I grew up in a house of women, with three older sisters. It wasn’t worth my life to ever, ever leave the toilet seat up. Dribbling on the side or the floor? It would have meant immediate execution. In matters toilet I was very well house trained. I even make sure to scrub those annoying streaks if any occur.

Still, I have noticed my wife likes the toilet cover also put down. So I do try, and put it down 9 times for the one I get absent minded and leave it up. I’m left wondering if I should turn this around, talk about the use of praise vs. castigation. Answer her question with a comment on how a small thank you for the nine times I change as she would like would be 90 times more effective than rebuke for the one time I did not.

The thing is, how do I do that and practice what I’d be preaching? How do I get a point across so that it is not a criticism that is the exact opposite of what I’m trying to say? A conundrum indeed, all on something small, but that is indeed something large.

Relationships are odd things.

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