Living in close quarters with another person brings to light many of our hilarious and annoying little quirks. When you live with a roommate there is always the possibility of escape. If things get too bad, you can always move out. Not so with a spouse! You're stuck with each other and that means learning how to decide what can be lived with, what has to change, and what can be compromised on.
Each couple has unique ways to work through quirks and annoyances. Our greatest succes in this area is called, "Peanut Butter."
Peanut Butter's inception was in sophomore year of college. It began because my husband thought flirting consisted of tickling my neck and/or picking me up and spinning me around. Two things which happen to be actions that make my body completely lose control. I'm not kidding you. If someone tickles my neck they are in for fighting, kicking, swearing, drooling...you name it. I can't take it. The same goes for spinning, my brain just does not like that motion. One time Jake tried spinning me around and when I tried to get away, I accidentally put two vertical scratches on each of his eyelids. When he closed his eyes the man looked like Voldemort. (You know with the red, slit-like snake eyes?)
The problem was that I would be pleading with him to stop these things, but I was laughing all the while. I needed a way to tell him, "I am serious, you really need to stop what you're doing." And thus was birthed, "Peanut Butter." Whenever I would say those two words it would communicate to Jake that I was dead serious and he needed to cease what he was doing immediately.
Over the years Peanut Butter has been handy in other ways. We've used it in fights as a way of grabbing the other person's attention. Sometimes when you're stuck arguing and both people can only focus on their own emotions...having a phrase like Peanut Butter can be a great way to say, "Hey look I really need you to pay attention to what I am saying right now, it's really important."
We also still use it when joking around. Jake and I are very sarcastic with each other and most of the time it's all in good fun. But once in a while someone says something that crosses the line and is hurtful. Saying "Peanut Butter" when this happens lets either Jake or I know that we need to apologize and stop the joking.
I'm sure there are so many little ways that spouses find to make living together bearable and enjoyable. We'd love to hear about them!