He said, she said


Last week Rob and I sat down and watched an episode of Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis. This is TV that requires no real brain effort, it has soft furnishings and his fabulous sense of humour which shines through. You might remember him from a previous TV show called Flipping Out or something similar where he flipped real estate in the US (buys, does up, sells all in quick succession) but this new show is much better for him…he is quite hilarious. Anywho, each week he visits a family/couple situation that are struggling with some aspect of their home – hoarding stuff, one persons style only, living in an inherited house etc – and in comes Jeff to fix up the interiors as well as a little personal therapy as well. This episode featured a couple that HATED EACH OTHER. They were married, and yet after a few years of one person not having their needs met, and the other feeling like they were being treated like a child THEY HATED EACH OTHER. You could see the seething anger bubbling up from the wife with every conversation that they had. You could see the husband going out of his way to NOT do what she wanted because she was treating him like an idiot, so I suppose he figured he would act like one. It was a great insight to married relationships. They fixed those cushions, and while things seemed to be on the mend by the end of the reno, I suspect that no amount of soft furnishings will be able to fix the issues that this couple had.

It reminded me of a conversation I had with an older and wiser friend of mine who left her husband a number of years ago. She told me how her husband and her started to have ANOTHER fight, who knows what it was over, but she recalls saying to him that they had indeed RUN OUT of things to fight about, and that they were starting to go back to the beginning of the argument merry-go-round and she was DONE. She wanted off. So she did. She hopped off. Arguments are bad enough the first time round, no point doing it again now is there? Loved that.

I’ve been in relationships in the past where needs are not met and not discussed. You know how when you keep things bottled inside over and over again until one day they breath or cough and you completely lose your shit because OHMYGODHOWCOULDYOUDOTHAT?! You are just so angry, about so much. And it’s not fair on the other person – the not talking about stuff – how on earth would they know that the way they unpacked the dishwasher 4 years ago wasn’t right?

Rob and I are not really fighters. I am getting so much better as I get older to talk about stuff. I think it means I am growing up, or maturing or something. Huh. We fight about shit that doesn’t matter: a knife with vegemite still spread on it left paused on the kitchen sink rather than in the dishwasher. Usually everything is based around my unrealistic and completely unfounded expectations not being met, about him not opening up to me about something, him revving the girls up completely and then walking out leaving me to deal with hyped up feralness, all things that mean nothing, count for nothing in the long run. We’re lucky.

I’m going to try to be better partner, because I pick fights about shit that doesn’t matter. And I really like my husband. I do.

What’s the number one thing that you and your partner argue about?
Are you angry with the way your partner is breathing right now?


  1. How hysterical is that show.. I love how he just winds them up but says it how it is.

    I think Marcus and I sound like you & Rob.. not much fighting, more bitching on my behalf and the norm where we all feel like we are harder done by than the other on certain days.

    I have a keeper.. BUT if he could just put things in the dishwasher instead of on top!

  2. Annaleis Topham says

    His parents….enough said right there!

  3. I very rarely fight with G, but I have been known to flip him the bird when he’s not looking. I find it quite therapeutic.

    • BabyMacBlogBeth says

      I usually do that stupid sign that Ross from Friends made up. You know the one where you bang together your forearms? Yep. THAT.

  4. My ex was the non-talking type. Also, a sociopath. You can imagine my surprise when I took him to the doctor for suspected depression and he came out with a referral for marriage counselling! Glad that’s all behind me.

  5. Rebecca Thompson says

    Yep, we have fights about shit that doesn’t matter. Luckily we talk a lot and those shit moments are forgotten as quick as the explosion that erupted.

  6. michelle barrington says

    We argue about the inability for the toilet seat to be dropped back down after use and this is building steam as I am determined for this bad habit to not be passed onto my son. Grrr

  7. It’s one of our favourite shows to watch at the moment – we record it and watch it once we’ve got the baby down.

    I wrote this blog post the other day about ‘true love’ http://goodfoodweek.blogspot.com.au/2013/07/true-love.html and how my partner’s breathing drives me insane and how I sometimes think about putting a pillow over his face πŸ™

  8. Emma Steendam says

    We don’t fight…but we’ve only been married less than two years and don’t have children, perhaps I shouldn’t count my chickens πŸ˜‰

    We have been together ten years this year, since I was sixteen, yeah we’re that couple. We finish each others sentences, literally. We traveled around Australia for twelve months with no more than half an hour spent apart FOR TWELVE MONTHS! I hadn’t really thought about that until we got home and Matt went and did something with his Dad and I sort of looked around and went…huh… People ask us if we fought or drove each other insane, fifteen hours straight on a dusty very corrugated outback track in a cramped ute in 48 degrees is the stuff marriages are made of in our book!

  9. Guv and I have humdinger fighters and have done from the first moment we got together and I imagine we will do until we both take our last breath. It’s just us. We got together after a whirlwind romance, engaged within 3 weeks of dating, married 11 months after we started dating. It’s go hard or go home for us, no easy route, we love hard but fight hard too BUT we’re coming up 13yrs married, 14 yrs together at the end of this year and we’ve outlasted everyone else we know who got together before and after us, so we’re obviously doing something right.

    I have to say, a couple that doesn’t fight seems just as “wrong”, as a couple that fights constantly. I think there needs to be that angry word you want to take back as soon as you say it, that little tanty sometimes – if you never feel the lows in a relationship, how will you recognise and then appreciate the highs when they happen?

    • BabyMacBlogBeth says

      Absolutely! I love the story of your whirlwind romance…Rob and I were engaged within 4 months of meeting. We fell HARD.

  10. Coming from a family that NEVER fought or argued, I actually think it’s quite healthy to have the odd argument or fight. It clears the air, resolves tension in a way that’s not always possible with discussion. Most of our fights are over fairly insignificant things though.

    It’s taken me a long time to learn how to fight/argue (rather than debate) but I would much rather be in a relationship with the odd row than none at all.

    • BabyMacBlogBeth says

      I so agree. I am getting so much better at working through stuff with Rob the older I get. I don’t sulk now! Ish,

  11. MotherDownUnder says

    We don’t argue much…but I of course have a running internal commentary about things like the toilet paper roll, his inability to put a new rubbish bag in the bin, and leaving ALL of the toast things out in case he might want another piece, all the big issues.
    I will say though that having kids is a total game changer. So many big issues surround kids. I used to not understand when people got divorced after having kids. Now I get it. You have to have one strong bond and some good communication skills to survive!
    And PS when I first wrote bond it came out bong…a bong might be handy too!

  12. the bed making… he makes the kids’ beds in the mornings and STILL, after all these years, has never noticed that they look different when he comes home of an evening. he does them and then I tidy them up the way they are MEANT to look after he goes to work. the only thing we ever really argue about is his inability to communicate properly – say what he is thinking – and I don’t mean all D&M stuff – regular, everyday stuff. and, of course, I totally blame his parents for it. bought up in a household that never discussed anything openly EVER. a few years ago when his dad had prostate cancer (caught early thankfully, removed and given the all clear) it was never discussed. his treatment, hospital visits, care, prognosis.. it was this giant fucking white elephant in the room. just so bizarre to me, but I have come to accept that is the way they are and he is the way he is.. I got a good one and get riled by the shit that doesn’t matter too..

  13. Sarah Owen-Green says

    Oh well apparently I don’t explain things properly, you know, for his crazy OCD brain to compute. Generally goes like this: Me “You know that thingy you showed me the other day in that place we went to where there were those things hanging from the roof thingy?” – Him “I’m not doing this again. Why can’t you just explain things properly?!”. Yea, that.

  14. We are so busy fighting with our 3 and half yr old that we don’t have the time to fight with each other!!
    This show sounds good! Country House Rescue episodes seem to have finished so I need something else to watch!

  15. this is speaking to me on so many levels I cannot even begin. It’s a physical presence in our relationship at the moment, this huge chasm that has opened up that I am beginning to think is getting to big to close… almost. Things unsaid so not to hurt the others feelings, bubbling tension, repressed anger (we too are not fighters either), the way his jaw clicks when he eats, how he unpacks the dishwasher but doesn’t repack it, the eleventy billion jobs around the house that are unfinished, the twenty thousandth time I have asked if he has called the accountant so we can get out tax done…. THE GARAGE…don’t get me started on the garage…. can someone spell HOARDER.

    I shall heed your words and sort. that. shit. out.

  16. We always say to each other that we are lucky we have such petty things to fight over. And not something massive like him never coming home or an affair or me splashing all the cash πŸ˜‰ Like you we fight over nothing – “you squeaked the door when you shut it, walk quieter, you’ll wake the baby lol”… stupid shit. I’m always angry since having a baby. Maybe its sleep deprivation, maybe it’s resentment (she only falls asleep with me, and breastfeeds all night long still, she is 11 months).

  17. Ben and I NEVER argue. After 8 years he still thinks it’s cute when I leave my towel on the floor. And I always mockingly shake my finger at him when I collect his pile of discarded socks at the end of the bed. We just really like doing things for each other.

  18. Lisa Mckenzie says

    We don’t ague much either but it is always the little things we fight about ,how he cannot put his clothes away,he cannot bring a plate home from work that i put his lunch on and how he messes up the cushions and doesn’t fix them and after 28 years of marriage I have realised it really does not matter,and try and keep my mouth shut!

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