AccessMyLibrary provides FREE access to millions of articles from top publications available through your library.
One of the best compliments my husband, Jim, and I ever received was from friends who decided to get married based, in part, on our example. The four of us spent a lot of time together when they were dating, and they saw us at our best and our worst. And it was our worst that clinched it for them. One evening, they told us, "You guys have shown us that it's possible to argue with someone you love."
Jim and I are known for our bickering. We argue about everything from how much garlic to put in the spaghetti sauce to the best way to pile leaves into a leaf bag. While all our petty arguing can be annoying to others, it's a big part of what makes our marriage work.
Before I met Jim, I dated a guy who brought out a nasty part of my personality, a part that enjoyed pushing people around. He was so passive he let me make every decision. Eventually, I became frustrated with him and pushed harder. That relationship taught me I needed to marry a man who wouldn't let me tell him what to do, who'd call me on nay bossiness, and stand up to nay stubbornness.
So when Jim and I had our first argument after dating less than two weeks, I …