Okay, I’ve heard the advice. I’ve given the advice. I’ve taken the advice! But, once in a while I rebel against the system and do it anyway. Why? Why do I keep doing it?
I BRING UP ISSUES WHICH LEAD TO TENSION LATE AT NIGHT!!!
There is something about those late night hours that make me want to dump the contents of my heart on Eric. After nine years of marriage, and seven years of working with premarital couples, I still make this mistake… repeatedly!
I know – KNOW – it is unwise to discuss anything important or potentially fight-provoking late at night, but sometimes my mouth goes for it anyway. And, the results are predictably negative.
But I Have to Get This Off My Chest!
To be honest, I don’t even remember what sparked it. I don’t remember the bulk of the conversation. All I know is that I kept talking. Something was bothering me and it “needed” to come out.
One frustrating word led to another. It was like we were playing verbal ping pong. What started out as something small (so small I literally cannot remember it), ended with me weakly saying “goodnight” and dragging off to bed.
An hour wasted.
A heart aching.
A lot of lying awake in bed.
Was it worth it? Not a chance.
The next day was Sunday. We went to church together still not having discussed the situation. When our Sunday School teacher began to pray, I slipped my hand in his gingerly, knowing he doesn’t like to be touched when he’s angry. My heart somewhat eased when he took my hand and held it between both of his. Neither of us wanted to be mad. What was the point?
Even relationship coaches have their weak moments. I guess we also need the experience, material, and war stories in order to share with our clients and readers. ~smile~
Can It Wait?
One of these days I hope I learn to keep my mouth shut late at night. Some topics are fine. Sitcoms? Sure. Jokes? Of course! Should we move to Alaska? No! Wait for morning, afternoon, or early evening!
When our relationship was very young, we read a more experienced couple write that they never discuss anything important after 10:30pm. This couple must have previously “enjoyed” quite a few midnight wars at their house too. They learned that most conversations late at night can wait until morning. Though, there are emergencies:
If someone is bleeding, discuss it.
If there is a noise in the basement, discuss it.
If you get a call from your friend and he or she is 10 minutes away from your house and planning to stay for the weekend (SURPRISE!), discuss it.
However, if it can wait, let it wait. Believe me; opening a can of worms late at night is not worth it. Getting it off your chest is not worth it. Opening a two-hour conversation when you need to be sleeping is not worth it.
Just sleep. Rest is often a perspective-changer.
A Different Idea
Tonight, I sent Eric an e-mail detailing some concerns I’m facing. I was able to translate my feelings to paper without jeopardizing our evening. Given the lateness of the hour, I told him I didn’t think we should discuss it tonight. On one hand, we may have discussed it with no problem. On the other, an innocent conversation at 2am might have led to a long, unnecessary argument. We’re tired. It’s late. So, we will talk about it soon. It will be fine. And tonight, we shall sleep! Ahhh, sweet sleep.
Whether this is a scenario you and your sweetie know all too well, or something you have yet to experience in your relationship, learn from our failures. You will have a happier relationship, and eventually marriage, if you take this one piece of advice. Don’t discuss anything important after <insert agreed upon time here>.
We recommend 10:30pm like the author did; however, each couple is different. Learn your limits and then agree on a time of night when you will avoid tense, life-changing, or potentially explosive topics.
Here’s to experiencing much peace and rest in 2015! Sleep first, talk later.
I will discuss this topic in more depth in our bi-monthly newsletter. Sign up below to take our free Beyond “You’ll Just Know” course and get into our newsletter! ~smile~
Have you and your sweetie ever gotten into a ridiculous fight late at night?