You load the dishwasher differently.
Okay, maybe it’s not the dishwasher specifically, but we all have our own way of doing things—squeezing the toothpaste, making the bed, separating the recycling—that can drive our partner crazy. “No couple escapes the we-do-it-differently struggle,” says Hendrix. Ultimately, you have to pick your battles.
How to handle: “Ask yourself how your decision to fold or not to fold like your partner will effect you and your home,” says Hendrix. “Is it really a big deal to fold differently?” Maybe this is an area where you can stretch a little for your partner. Or maybe your towel-folding method is an integral part of your mental health and ditching it will drive you up a damn wall. If the battle is worth fighting, explain to your partner why your way is so important to you.
You have different sex drives.
“Every couple has one partner who wants sex more and one who wants it less,” says Hendrix. So take a sigh of relief, you’re not alone. “Sex is never a problem until you aren’t having it—then it becomes the elephant in the room. If you can navigate this discussion early on, the elephant won’t appear as much.”
How to handle: “Find the fine line of stretching for your partner without feeling resentful or taken advantage of,” says Hendrix. In practice, that often looks like acknowledging your partner’s desire when you’re not in the mood and being honest when you just really aren’t feeling it. “Show your partner you hear them and you care,” Hendrix says. “If you say no, come back around in the next day or so and see if the timing is better for both of you.”