Take a Look in Your Mirror


My boyfriend is a metrosexual. We always joked about the fact that he used more hair products than me, etc. Lately he seems to care so much about his appearance that it’s getting really annoying. He takes all kinds of supplements to build muscle and he’s always looking at himself in the mirror. I’m wondering if this will ever get better or if it’s time to end it. -Dating a Metrosexual

Only you can discern if a partner’s “really annoying” habits are enough to end a relationship. It’s a common problem: A trait that you used to like — or at least tolerate with humor — has begun to wear thin. Many people describe this happening in long-term relationships over time, but when it happens in relatively new relationships, it’s not the greatest of signs.

It also seems like his behavior is intensifying, which might mean that your overall values are headed in different directions (perhaps you’re more boardroom while he’s more “Jersey Shore”). The million-dollar question? Whether this is truly an isolated trait, or whether it’s tied into larger aspects of him that are starting to feel like not such a good fit.

Bossing Around Is Another Job

I’ve become what I never wanted to be — the nagging wife. Now that we have two young boys, I find our conversations revolve around me telling my husband to do stuff or complaining that stuff hasn’t gotten done. Even when we’re getting along, it’s like I’m his boss. I swear he’s gotten lazier. I sometimes get so angry at him that I can barely think straight, and then I yell at him and he sulks and ignores me. -At an Impasse

There’s no doubt that relationships take a serious hit when children enter a family. One of the most common complaints is having to renegotiate the new list of to-dos, especially if one partner is more concerned with them than the other is.

You’re resentful that duties seem to be defaulting to you, whereas he most likely feels attacked for insufficiently following rules he’s not even aware of. You might be able to resolve this without counseling. Here’s the test: Each of you should decide on two specific, daily things that you can do differently to make the other person feel helped out. Try it for a week. If you’re motivated to stick with it, then you’re on the right track. If not, see a counselor to get a boost of accountability.

Dr. Andrea Bonior writes Express' advice column, Baggage Check.
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