The best time to 'fix' your husband

You love your husband, but there are some things that need to change. When is the best time to talk to him about it?

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  • Every marriage has room for improvement, but knowing when to bring up these potentially traumatic conversations with him (and others) is a skill you'll need to master if you want to prevent hurt feelings ... and your frayed nerves. The balance is finding the right situation so you can soften the blow by reassuring your hubby that this criticism comes from a place of love.

  • We've outlined eight situations that are either appropriate, or not appropriate times to voice your concerns:

  • Situation 1

  • You're out shopping with your best friend. You tell her everything ... including all the times this week that you've been annoyed with you husband.

  • The answer? Appropriate

  • As long as your best friend knows that deep down you really do love your husband, it's OK to tell her about the times that he drives you crazy. This is a chance to practice explaining what you are feeling and get some valuable feedback from a close friend. Maybe you'll realize that what you are stressing about isn't as big of a deal as you have made it out to be.

  • Situation 2

  • You're at a party and your friend just shared a story about how her ex used to do what he thought was the funniest thing. She goes on to say how it bothered her so much. You realize that's exactly what your husband does.

  • You look over at your husband and wink, then you open your mouth.

  • The answer? Not appropriate

  • Unless you are going to tell your friend that she's being silly it's never good to embarrass your husband in front of a group of people. You would hate it if he did that to you - conversations about irksome quirks and habits shouldn't happen in front of a crowd.

  • Situation 3

  • You're online and your Facebook status is begging you to tell everyone "what's on your mind". You have just had the biggest fight with your husband and want some validation that what he said was out of line (and want everyone to take your side).

  • The answer? Not appropriate

  • You should never publicly share your fight. You may end of sharing saying something that you can never take back, and we all know that conversations like this should happen face-to-face, and only with the people directly involved. Facebook is not a place to air your marriage grievances.

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  • Situation 4

  • You are playing Scrabble with your family and are dying to bring up what's been bothering you.

  • The answer? Not appropriate

  • Spending time with the family should be used to build up those relationships, not tear them down. Plus, you never want your family members to feel like they need to "pick sides" if you and your spouse are arguing.

  • Situation 5

  • You're headed to pick up your mister from work and take him out to lunch. While you wait for him to finish up a project, you joke with a coworker who says "don't you wish he would just stop working". You've got a lot to say about your husband's long hours ... but should you mention it to a coworker?

  • The answer? Not appropriate

  • Your relationship problems don't need to be discussed with his co-workers. Ever. If you are good friends with the people he works with , and if you need relationship advice, that needs to be a conversation done in private and in confidence so your marital issues don't turn into the latest gossip.

  • Situation 6

  • You are at dinner with your spouse and finally have the chance to talk to him about what's been bothering you.

  • The answer? Appropriate

  • Take time on dates to discuss how you want the relationship to improve. Dates are there to improve communication - it's never a bad time to talk to each other when it's the two of you. Spend a portion of date night opening up communication and explaining to him what is working for you and what's not. In return, be open to hear what he has to say.

  • Situation 7

  • He wants to be intimate but all you can think about is how he didn't do the dishes. Do you bring it up?

  • The answer? Not appropriate

  • Keeping score is never healthy in a relationship. Your marriage should be based on give and take. Sometimes you end up giving more, and other times you end up taking more. The important thing is that you are not withholding good things as punishment when your spouse "messes up" on other things. You both need to learn to work together - it'll benefit the both of you. Avoid "getting even" and realize that maybe you need to have a conversation about who helps with what around the house some another time.

  • Situation 8

  • You are having a stressful day at work. He calls to say "hi" and you just want to respond with the classic line: "we need to talk."

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  • The answer? Appropriate

  • Even if you are stressed about something else, it's important to be honest with your partner about what you are feeling. It's never a problem to talk to your sweetheart. Open communication is one of the best things for a relationship ... even if your stressful work life has seemingly made problems at home appear worse.

  • If you feel like something is going wrong in your relationship it's never a problem to talk to him about it. Just make sure you are picking the right situations. Be open, honest and kind. Listen to what he has to say. Make sure these discussions happen between you and him (and no one else). Talking to each other is the best way to rebuild your relationship and smooth out any problems.

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Christa is a part time photographer, part time writer and full time lover of life. She loves eating chocolate chip cookies and singing (but not at the same time). She has her degree in political science.

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