Words can either make or mar your relationship. What do you tell your guy during quarrels? What expressions do you joke with? Why not learn which ones hurt and stray away from it permanently? ‘Don’t worry, the guy you saw me with is just my ex’ But, of course, that’s precisely the reason why your guy will worry. So, if that guy is an ex — meaning former, past or previous — why is he still around in the present, and why now? Who knows the sparks may just start flying again, what makes you think you are immune to finding your ex attractive again? ‘My ex-lover was a better one’ Never compare your former with your present. Even, if your ex was such a great mad man in and out of bed, you should not compare it, or share it with your current lover. A man needs to feel that he is the best lover that you have ever had. If he does not know how to please you, then show him and teach him. That way you can both be perfect lovers for each other. ‘You are just like your mother/father’ Telling your man that he is just like his mother or father is not good. If your dear one does not adore his parents, it is not wise to compare him to them. Nobody wants to hear that he has the same bad qualities as his parents. Of course many of the qualities are inherited. You just need to tolerate his bad habits and enjoy his good ones. ‘You are so boring’ If you have been in relationship or marriage for some time, it might seem to you your partner is boring. It is because you both got used to each other and not expect anything more from each other. So the best that you can do is to spend some time together. Take a trip, go on a picnic, do something that you wouldn’t do normally just be sure to share some time together. ‘When are you going to find a new job?’ Before you say anything that could be hurtful to him, think about what your own issues are. Be particularly careful that you’re not attacking his ability to support you and the kids. Part of how a man evaluates himself is by how well he can take care of his family. When you utter this kind of words, you are insulting him in this sensitive area and it’s a serious blow. To avoid this, have regular talks about both of your jobs, career ambitions and budget concerns. ‘My mother warned me you’d do this!’ Something must have seriously infuriated you, because what you’re doing here is letting him know that there are others in your ‘camp’. You are trying to validate your ‘side’ of an argument, as though you’re marshalling an army to your side. But that’s never a good idea because it’s telling him that you’re not on his side, or on the side of your relationship. Though you should never let the opinions of others’ dictate your relationship, if there is some kernel of truth to a concern that your mother raised, think about how to address that. ‘Just leave it, I’ll do it myself!’ This is hurtful in two ways. First, it gets at his elemental need to be a provider, supporter and capable person. Second, it’s just plain demeaning for any adult to hear that his efforts are sub-par. Do this too often and he might think, “I can never do anything right or anything that’ll please her.” ‘You always…’ or ‘You never…’ These are two phrases couples are advised never to use because they set up an instant, negative tone; they halt communication and they put the other person on the defensive. Most men are willing to do most anything that’ll make you happy — it’s all in how you ask. ‘It’s your fault!’ Sometimes, a financial decision goes bad, or some unforeseen event occurs. And know this – things do go bad from time to time in any relationship. Decisions turn out wrong. Stuff happens! But the blame game never works! It alienates. It divides. It most certainly undermines trust and openness in your relationship? ‘I am upset with you about this or that’ Telling private secrets or criticising your spouse in public or to someone else can do permanent damage to the trust in your relationship. True or not – it doesn’t matter. Keep private things private? “Can you really afford that?’’ Most guys tie up a huge part of their self-worth in their finances, so criticising his money-handling abilities is, to him, the same as calling him a loser. So if you’re engaged, married, or involved in a large joint purchase, pick a neutral time to discuss money with him – in other words, not when you’re seething about the five new video games you just spotted on a credit-card statement. Then sit down together, and make a budget.
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