April 1, 2016

You Should Go to Bed Angry.

Dave and I are a short 3 months away from getting married. We haven’t gotten into pre-marital counseling or anything, but we do often talk about advice and tips we learn with each other. Everyone is always so eager to give advice about marriage, and most of the time it is good stuff.

One of the things that we always hear is “don’t go to bed angry.” I honestly don’t think that this is good advice at all. 

Disagreements and fighting happens in a relationship. Two individuals aren’t going to agree on everything, all the time. Actually, if you don’t ever disagree with your significant other, that might be a bad sign.

“Never go to bed angry” is an age old saying. But really, who wants to be up at 1am fighting or discussing your problems with your partner. Not me. Personally, if I am tired, I am a million times more cranky, more likely to pick a fight with Dave, and way more likely to say something that I’ll regret. If we just take a break from our argument and sleep on it, we apologize to each other in the morning and are able to work it out.

Now is going to bed angry fun? Not really. But it works.

Studies show that when you lack sleep, your judgement and self-control are the first things to go.  And those are both things that are so important in a fair argument. The last thing you want to do is cause serious and/or unnecessary harm to your relationship because you are cranky.

People tend to think that if you don’t solve your problems the minute there is a disagreement, that there will be resentment. But the difference between not going to bed angry and tabling the discussion is a clear head. Agreeing to wait until morning allows you both to see the problem for what it is. One of you might just be picking a fight about something because you are tired.

Even though this is probably the piece of marriage advice that we hear most often, I’m not going to take it.

Dave and I have lived together for about 4 years, and sometimes we go to sleep when we are still angry with each other. But I have to say, that about 95% of the time when I wake up after a fight, I feel bad for being mad at him about whatever it is. We both can then discuss the issue if it is important, but drop it if it’s really not important. 

What is your take on this age old advice? Do you follow it?

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