If you're antsy in your marriage or long-term partnership, you might need some reminders on how to keep your relationship intact during the holiday season. After all, "Baby, It's Cold Outside" is not a duet sung by folks who have been together for twelve or fourteen years. "Santa, Baby" is not about a devoted wife or her strong, adoring spouse. Many jokes about "Secret Santas" cannot be repeated in front of children.
Here are some things to remember in order to help you "Stay Strong" this season!
1. Avoid cute people in elf costumes. Remember that anybody half your age looks cute in an elf costume.
2. Do not linger under doorways festooned with mistletoe. "Move away from the threshold" is a line to be taken literally as well as metaphorically during this time of year.
3. Do not purchase, or consider purchasing, items of clothing for anyone other than yourself or your spouse which would not be considered appropriate if photographed during check-out by a 15-year-old neighbor with a passion for Instagram.
4. Avoid anyone with a passion for Instagram. I mean, really.
5. If you find yourself beginning sentences with "If only..." or "Who knows whether..." just stick your finger in your eyeball or bite down hard on your tongue. A finger in the eyeball or a lumpy tongue are healthier alternatives than sentimentalized regret.
6. Remind yourself why you chose your mate and your life. If necessary, get out the old pictures and laugh together at yourselves in old elf costumes. Celebrate and stay away from the eggnog unless you--or your lovely spouse--made it and you're staying in that evening. Play "Baby, It's Cold Outside" and disprove the theory that longterm couples never sing it to each other.