One little question and a lot of courage is all it takes to avoid one of the largest problems most couples face-Resentment Buildup.
How do you know when your partner's distance or irritability is being caused by some issue that he/she is not talking about. Besides if she/he is not talking, why ask for trouble-"If it ain't broke, don't fix it". Why ruin a good day or evening?
Unfortunately, when we do not talk to each other about the concerns in our relationship, symptoms begin to develop-distance, irritability, lack of sexual desire, addictive behaviors, depression or anxiety to name a few.
Take a deep breath, remember there is never a really a good time to talk about challenges, call up your courage and keep in mind that you are expressing your love and taking responsibility for attending to your realtionship and then ask:
Is there anything that you have not said to me this week that you are holding back or is troubling you?
Of course, the really hard part comes when your partner tells you a concern that is bothering him/her. Take another deep breath and whatever it is, thank her/him for sharing and say you will give it some thought and get back to him/her tomorrow. Even if you are not in agreement, you have helped the couple to have the opportunity to confront the problem rather than burying it and have it come back to "bite you" when you are least expecting it.
Next week: What about issues that are long standing and only cause fights when you try to talk about them.