The Couple Vault
While we trust our partner to keep skeletons under lock and key, it’s best to be clear on when mum is the word. To help you avoid slipping private moments into conversation, here are life coach Ellen Goldhar’s top unmentionables.
The situation: Every weekend your partner bets money on his favorite sports teams. When you complain about this to your girlfriends, they peg him as an addict who’ll lose everything.
Goldhar says: “Choose your words carefully because with every complaint you make, you’re painting a picture of your partner for someone who doesn’t know him as well as you do. Be sure your frustration is diffused before you call your friends or they’ll start to form judgments.”
The situation: During sex, your wife likes you to act out her wild fantasies. But if she finds out you were bragging to the guys on poker night, you may find all access denied!
Goldhar says: “For many women sex is an especially vulnerable act. Not only will she never feel comfortable around your friends again but she may also feel betrayed and stop opening up to you.”
3. Pet Names
The situation: In an adorable baby voice your man likes to call you “pookie.” But beg him to call you that in front of his buddies and your cooing man may suddenly turn cold.
Goldhar says: “The fact that your partner is comfortable showing emotions in front of you is a sign of trust — a gift that should be honored, not betrayed. Keep matters of the heart private unless you both agree otherwise.”
The situation: Your wife confides in you that her parents are considering a separation. Assuming you’re all one big family now, you let it slip to yours that things are awry.
Goldhar says: “Be careful when carrying tales about your wife’s family to your own family and vice versa. Different families have different ‘rules,’ so clarify with your partner what matters should be kept private.”
The situation: You’re making more money than your man and let on jokingly to your friends that once again you had to pay the rent this month, making him look like a deadbeat hubby.
Goldhar says: “Finances, like sex, politics and religion, are taboo subjects for many couples. Everyone wants to feel like they can provide and succeed — a comment like this, even if made in jest, can be a direct hit to your partner’s manhood.”
Image(s): Clayton Hanmer