Married Life // Stress

stress

Okay. We’ve been on each other’s nerves lately. Let’s be real — it happens. I think that Mr. Lovely and I have a (so far) pretty happy and well-adjusted marriage going. But I’m not afraid to admit that it’s been intense lately with both of us juggling pretty huge projects, and being just a bit on edge.

Before I started writing this post, I asked him to name one or two things that I’ve been doing that really just bug him. And he couldn’t (or didn’t want to, if you ask me…). And I got frustrated, saying that there HAD to be something I do that makes him bonkers! And he said, “There. That. When you act like everything is the end of the world.” So I said thank you very much and got down to work. Ha.

But I digress. All of this is to say that I’ve really come to be aware lately of how stress can take a toll on a relationship. After we wrote the ebook, Mr. Lovely was the one who did the layout design for us. It was just me and him, sitting at our desks at home, day after day, hour upon hour, putting together this crazy puzzle. And on top of that, there were our usual responsibilities with both of our businesses, keeping the house clean, seeing friends, and just life stuff. After a while our nerves just got a little raw and any little thing would set us off. He didn’t like one of my ideas? Boom, argument. I didn’t like that noise he kept making with his mouth? Boom, argument. Neither one of us wanted to cook dinner? Forget it.

I’m pretty pumped to say that we’re through the tunnel and back on track! But I’m definitely putting those lessons we learned in my pocket for the next time we’re in a pressure cooker of stress. It’s so hard to stop when you’re on a train that’s about to derail, and get to the bottom of what’s really upsetting you. Because I feel like nine times out of ten, it’s not really what you’re arguing about. It’s probably something much more simple.

Have you ever been in a particularly stressful season and had it take a toll on your relationship? I’d love to hear about how you dealt with it! I’m no expert here, so lay your advice on me and I’ll have some tricks up my sleeve for next time. xoxo

P.S. In semi-related news, did you get your copy yet? See the masterpiece that inspired this post in the first place. (I kid, I kid.)

16 thoughts on “Married Life // Stress”

  1. Ha! now i see it’s not happening to us only. Being both freelance we get to be in each others feet all the time. And once we’ve got a lot of things to work on, and not to mention getting to work together on something. Like you said, boom. hah but that’s just life and happens.

    Even those moments have their cute and sweet things, no?

  2. My finance is going through Medical school, and is soon to start on rotations. It has been a bumpy ride for us the last couple years. With me graduating and moving to Chicago to be with him all in the same month, searching for a job, and trying to be a supportive girlfriend (now fiance(: ) and him working hard on studying, more studying, and focusing on school. Sometimes all I think we do is argue. It got to to the point where we ended up arguing over practically nothing because both our stress levels were so high. One day, it hit me that we were doing something wrong. I noticed he wasn’t understanding me, and I wasn’t understanding him. It was like stress had put a cloud of confusion around us individually so that we no longer were speaking the same language. That is when I came up with the “talking only object”. Let me tell you, when we are both tired, stressed, and feeling like fighting is our only way of communication, the “talking only object” has saved us hours of endless arguments or unsettled slience. How it works? It is usually just any object (for awhile it was germ stuffed animal he bought – med nerd) for when you are getting in the heat of the argument. At that point, I usually grab any object near by and when I or my fiance has the object, the other person is no longer able to talk. If I have it, then I say whatever it is I need to say, then I give it to him, and he has to summarize what it is HE thinks I said. After that, then he talks, with no interruptions. Usually after that, we can talk like normal human beings instead of pumped up wrestlers. Trust me, I know it sounds ridiculous, and basically childish. But adults get so stuck in their mind that I don’t think you realize how many different ways other people can interpret emotions in a way you may not even think is in the ballpark of what you are really feeling. And personal stresses usually seem to add a further gap between what we are feeling and what the other person is understanding. It has done wonders for me and my Fiance. Sometimes, I have no idea how stressed about school he really is, and sometimes he doesn’t know how stressed I am about it! It makes arguments turn into talks, and talks into connecting. <3 Thanks for your post.

    1. This is amazing! And it might sound childish, but if it works, who the heck cares? The longer I’m married and the more married people I talk to, the more I realize that there are no rules, and no solutions are “right” or “wrong” for everyone. It’s totally about carving your own path and doing what works for you. I love that you found a solution!

  3. First: I TOTES LOVE that picture of you guys. You should frame it. Seriously.

    Next: Whenever I go to weddings and they have that little “advice for the married couple” thingy I always write; “Remember you are on the same side.”
    My mom and dad split up when I was 29 and my mom sold her house and moved in with me while she decided what to do next. It took a HUGE toll on me and Husband but we just stayed on each other’s side and made it through.
    It coulda been real bad if we took opposite sides.

  4. Oh my goodness, I felt like I was reading my life just now. Although my husband and I have separate businesses on polar opposites on the scale, we still share an office & hear each others woes. Thanks for sharing so I don’t feel alone!

    Janeane

    1. Haha! I think the consensus is that you’re definitely not alone. And I think that working in close quarters with a spouse definitely is a challenge. (A challenge that I love, but a challenge nonetheless!)

  5. 3 months ago we moved across the country to Texas where we knew NOT A SOUL. The amounts of tiffs we got in after that went up exponentially! But thank heavens we are getting used to the area & used to relying on each other more than ever before.

  6. I can’t imagine there is a couple in the world that doesn’t go through this from time to time. When I realize its happening to us, I simply say something about it. If I am open and honest with myself and my partner about what’s happening between us, it may start with an uncomfortable/emotional/overwhelming conversation, but it always ends better. We understand where the other is coming from and learn whether there is something we can do to ease the tension. As far as I can tell, openness and honesty are the solutions to most every relationship issue!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Melody

    1. Agreed! Sometimes I find myself picking a fight about something that’s completely irrelevant, rather than fessing up about what’s really bugging me. Thanks Melody!

  7. Thanks, Chelsea for posting about this! I can really relate. It’s those times when you are stressed and overwhelmed when I find it happens most. It’s like we both need to breathe and take a break. I find it’s a work in progress on how to treat each other during these times. It’s challenging and I hate doing things I regret. I love to blog about this crazy ride called marriage. I’m actually linking to this post because I think it rocks!

  8. Amen Chelsea ~ As with all of your posts, I usually come away reminding myself, “see, everyone goes through this being a business owner”. Most recently I was doing a photo shoot for my website launch and foolishly asked my otherwise supportive husband to lend a hand. I had arranged for set stylists, a photographer, and models to be there – the first exciting step and collaboration for my new business. And wouldn’t you know it, my husband {whom I otherwise love} showed up as the biggest grump on campus. He was rude, short, and generally unpleasant. To say I was mortified is an understatement. Here I was, making this big leap and having industry phenoms playing along, and he was completely misrepresenting me and my business. I’m happy to say that, of course, we moved passed this and just the other night he curled up next to me and asked, “Can I see some of your pretty stuff” {referring to a recent photo shoot}. Oh marriage… Is it just me, or is it oddly comforting to have someone you can fight with to your last breath, but know they’ll still be there for you tomorrow. Thanks again for the post. I’m officially addicted to your site.

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