The Marriage Secret No One Ever Tells You

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Couple chained together
The dirty little secret about marriage and fighting that no one likes to admit.

In the early days of our marriage, I felt ashamed about coming clean about our arguments. Wasn't I being disloyal? Wouldn't people think horrible things about us? But the truth is, the more I talked to married couples, the more I realized how normal it is to occasionally slam a door, or hide a cookie, or lay in bed and wonder if you just committed to the same old remote control fight for as long as you both shall live. I am forever indebted to a couple who told my husband and me a story about their epic battle over putting together a bookshelf. During the heat of the fight, the husband walked out of their apartment. The wife then decided the best way to make him sorry was to eat an entire pie his mother had made for him. When he came back, he found his wife, in the middle of the kitchen floor, her face covered in blueberry pie, crying. He grabbed a fork and joined her. They've been married for 20 years.

At the time, I remember feeling shocked. How could they say they had a good marriage when they were both that ridiculous? That, of course, was before I stooped low and hid the cookies. Now, I cling to that blueberry pie story like a talisman. On my worst days, it reminds me, we can be both dumb and happily married. I'm not condoning acts of childishness or silly fights. It's good to always keep perspective, but the truth is you can't always keep perspective. In those moments, when you've lost all dignity and you are covered in blueberry pie and crying on the floor, just know, it's OK. We've all been there, whether we admit it or not. Poll: Does Fighting Lead To Better Sex?

Recently, during a fight, I told my husband, "You know what? I'm OK with this fight. I know I have the rest of my life to spend making you learn how to do the laundry "

"That's right," he said, "and I have the rest of my life to train you to turn the lights out in the house." Then, we went to bed, still a little angry, but very much committed to figuring it out as long as we both shall live.

What was the worst fight you had during your marriage?

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