The wrong bags
Dear Annie: This may be a new one for you, but I’m finding it frustrating, to say the least. My husband, who is a retired European-trained chef, does most of the cooking now that we are both retired. For years, I’ve used zip-lock bags for storing leftovers. Over the past two years, he’s insisted on buying a kind that has to be lined up perfectly to be pressed together. I hate these bags, and he knows it. I have a hard time getting them to close properly. He refuses to use the ones I prefer. I end up putting things in “my” bags if I can’t close “his.” What message is he sending?! I am so beyond frustrated! — Why?!
Dear Why: The person to put that question to is your husband. But I can tell you that when you and your partner are fighting about something as small as zip-lock bags, there are bigger issues at hand. This bag issue may just be the lightning rod for all the emotional static that’s built up over the past two years — or however long you’ve both been retired, as it’s normal for couples to experience some friction when adjusting to retirement. You’re around each other a lot more often, with all the routines you’ve been following for 30-plus years suddenly upended. Take a step back together to look at the big picture of your relationship. Are there things you haven’t been communicating? Are there needs that aren’t being met — perhaps for more togetherness or more alone time? Once you’re on the same page with the big things, the little things tend to become a lot less significant.