02
Feb
09

Let’s start over

Red Hot Momma’s try to be good.  They really do.  Sometimes it just doesn’t turn out the way we intended… For instance, Mr. Red Hot comes home in a bad mood.  Let’s say he got mugged or worse a new, younger boss that is anything but fair.  Mrs. Red Hot decides that if Mr. Red Hot wants to feel better he must TALK about it.  (Did I hear a collective groan?) Not just talk about it, cry too.  Right now. 

Ugh.  Mr. Red Hot doesn’t want to talk about it.  He wants to punch something…or someone.  Right now.  Mrs. Red Hot persists; “How does that make you feel, Dear”.  Mr. Red Hot has had enough.  Mr. Red Hot is becoming..well…red hot..mad.  Mrs. Red Hot senses that her efforts to make the Mister feel better have gone wrong.  Horribly, horribly wrong. The young Red Hot Momma’s among us might find themselves feeling angry now too. Angry at Mr. Red Hot. Hurt feelings and hurt pride really want to take over and have a hissy fit. So now everyone is angry and no one is going to bed happy.  At this point in the conversation, in the marriage, it is best to start over.  Literally. 

 This Red Hot Momma learned a nifty little trick a few years back that has changed my life.  Not to mention my marriage.  When things are going downhill quick.  When every attempt to reach out to your partner is failing.  Miserably.  Someone needs to call a “Let’s start over”.  It’ s like a adult time out. 

“Let’s Start Over” means the following.  “Wow.  How did this happen?  I couldn’t wait to get home to you today.  Now, I’m checkin’ out Expedia for a one way ticket to Aruba.  Let’s step back for a second.  We are on the same team here.  I love you.  You love me.  Let’s try this again.” 

Depending on the severity of the situation, one may have to start over all the way back five p.m., even though it’s 9:45.  It can be hard to keep a straight face while greeting your spouse after you have been screaming or ignoring one another for the last four hours.  Try it.  Start over.  “How are you sweetie?” “Fine.  And you?”  “Well, I had a really crappy day, but it’s over now.”  “If you want to talk about it, I’m here for you.”  “Thanks.” 

It feels forced at first.  Ridiculously so.  Give it time.  Go with the flow.  Pray for a change of heart.  (Notice I didn’t say for which one of you :)) Pretty soon, things will start turning around.  If by nothing more than the sheer absurdity of what you are doing. 

LSO’s come with some ground rules.  You cannot use a LSO to avoid serious problems. Or in a passive aggressive way, like “Your mother is from hell!  Let’s have a time out..”.  They can’t be used to often either.  LSO’s are like a spare tire in the trunk of your marriage.  They are good for the occasional blow out, but you don’t want to drive on them everyday.

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5 Responses to “Let’s start over”


  1. February 3, 2009 at 5:23 am

    Great advice!

    I’ve been missing your posts, wondering when you’d bounce back onto the blogging scene.

    This was a great post and great advice but all those LSO’s toward the end made me start singing the song ‘L.S.I.’ by Shamen. Now it’s stuck there and I can’t get it out.

    Aaarghhhhh!

  2. 2 Tom
    February 3, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    LSO’s sound like UFO’s (Useful Fighting Objects). I’ll have to try this when the time comes. I like peace in the house.

  3. February 3, 2009 at 2:19 pm

    Glad the first related post was Love & Respect. That is the first thing that came to my mind. We are doing the book as a Sunday School class right now and this is the very thing we were talking about on Sunday. I read it over a year ago, but now we are going through it together and it makes a huge difference. Not that both can’t benefit from one reading it, but we are actually enjoying going through the workbook together and learning more about each other’s pink-ness and blue-ness. I have learned so much about how my husband deals with things.

  4. February 3, 2009 at 7:54 pm

    these really work! my husband has been the champ LSO advocate in our home and it has blessed us so much, doing exactly what you described, making it possible to connect and be normal to each other even in the biggest messes! it’s especially helpful for those in the car tense moments (or maybe we’re the only ones…haha) when it’s SO nice to arrive at your destination (inlaws for dinner, the grocery store, or the best, CHURCH) actually speaking to each other with love flowing freely (or at least not pure annoyance and resentment). anyway, amen to this post, it’s such a blessing to have the graciousness/a gracious spouse to be able to pull this off.

  5. 5 freetolive
    February 3, 2009 at 10:07 pm

    Peter- thanks!

    Tom- me too!

    Juiliana-Thanks for reading.

    Allison- glad to hear this works for other people too!


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