No couple is happy all the time. Inevitable spats and disagreements arise, which are normal, healthy aspects of relationships, according to information distributed by Reachout.com, a resource dedicated to helping young people deal with issues that affect mental health. Conflict challenges partners to engage, communicate, problem-solve and compromise. Working through upsetting situations together can strengthen your bond. When your boyfriend starts getting on your nerves, consider taking a few basic steps to address the matter productively.
Identify the Problem
Identify the source of your irritation. Perhaps your boyfriend leaves his mess for you to clean, or maybe he has a habit of interrupting when you are speaking. After pinpointing the source of your irritation, Reachout.com suggests that you consider the actual issue. Frustration over cleaning his messes may really be about your boyfriend taking you for granted, and frequent interruptions are disrespectful of personal boundaries. Conversely, he may not be the problem at all. It is possible that unacknowledged stressors, such as a busy schedule, financial strain, or lack of sleep, may be the true reasons that you're so annoyed. If you understand the specific problem, you can resolve it.
Make a Plan
Once you get to the heart of the matter, you can prepare to address it. If the problem is a result of poor time or financial management, you may consider revising your schedule or your budget. Eliminating some extracurricular activities can loosen your schedule and allow more rest, while eliminating some unnecessary expenses -- cable, for instance -- can relax your budget. If the cause of your frustration and impatience is indeed due to your boyfriend's behavior, the most productive option is to address it with him. Otherwise, a relationship concern that is neglected will likely fester to the point that it cracks the very foundation you and your boyfriend have built.
Approach Your Boyfriend
Even if your boyfriend has not been the source of your stress, it may be beneficial to discuss the issue with him. Communication is essential to a healthy relationship, and he may sense your frustration, and this may confuse him. Communication is particularly critical if you have a problem with him, however. Plan a time to have an open, honest and respectful conversation with your boyfriend. It should not take place when either of you is distracted by a television program, or a few minutes before one of you is obligated to go to school or work. When you have his attention, assertively tell him about the issue. For example, you may say, "I dislike being interrupted," or "It is unfair to expect me to clean your messes." Tell him how his actions make you feel, and ask him to make a deliberate effort to change them.
Evaluate the Outcome
Your boyfriend's response to what you have to say will inform your next steps. If he listens attentively -- even if he doesn't agree -- and expresses a willingness to be more aware of his actions and how they affect you, your relationship will probably thrive. If he reacts defensively and aggressively, or blames you for his behavior, the relationship is bound to suffer. An inability to problem-solve and compromise can destroy a partnership, and at some point either of you may decide to end it. Regardless of the outcome, it is critical that you take care of yourself. In an article called "Stress and How to Lower It," the Center for Young Women's Health at the Children's Hospital of Boston suggests that activities such as journaling and exercising can help you maintain some peace of mind as you deal with relationship issues.
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