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Whether you didn't live together before you tied knot or you've recently been resurrected from the hazy joy otherwise known as the honeymoon period, you may have just started to notice that your spouse has a few habits that really get on your nerves. "You're experiencing your spouse not only as a lover, but as a roommate," says Julie de Azevedo Hanks, Ph.D., LCSW, owner and director of Wasatch Family Therapy. "His or her daily habits may be new to you — and annoying."
But before you begin a bickering match, take a moment to read these five first-year pet peeves our experts say you simply have to let go.
1. You don't like your spouse's self-care habits — or lack there of.
The way he shaves, how she brushes her teeth, whether he or she cuts his or her toenails on a weekly basis. These are issues, says Hanks, you simply can't summon up. "Your spouse is a grown up," she says, "and you're not his mother."
2. You think the way your spouse cleans could use some polishing.
You may not like how your husband loads the dishwasher or how your wife has organized the sock drawer but let it go — "Because there isn't a right way to do chores" says Hank.
3. You don't like what your spouse does in his down time.
You may think your wife's shoe addiction is a waste of money, but "as long as there is no harm to you or the relationship, commenting on these differences leads to your spouse feeling judged and defensive," says Lesli Doares, marriage coach and author of Blueprint for a Lasting Marriage.
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4. You believe your spouse needs grammar lessons.
He may use "then" when he should say "than," and that may get under your skin, but "it's not your job to change him or correct him," says Hanks. And especially "don't correct him in front of other people."
5. Your spouse's penchant to tell dumb jokes.
So your husband got his sense of humor from watching reruns of The Simpsons. You may not find his jokes funny, but "let it go," warns Hanks, "because it's better to let him have a quirky sense of humor than to shut down his sense of humor."