'Do-It-Yourself' Can Be Fightin' Words

35% of British homeowners admit to house-related disputes
By Ambreen Ali,  Newser Staff
Posted May 4, 2008 12:18 PM CDT
'Do-It-Yourself' Can Be Fightin' Words
Couples said they clashed on differing ways of operating in DIY projects: Leaving tools around or taking longer than the other person wants led to fights.   (Shutter stock)

Adrian starts painting in the middle, but Hannah wants the wall layered methodically. Adrian storms out, and Hannah works alone. The DIY dispute is no anomaly: 35% of British homeowners said in a recent study that home improvements caused domestic rifts. Underlying the debates on paint color and floorboards is a power struggle, marital therapist Andrew G. Marshall writes in the Times of London.

Unlike money or sex issues, half-finished projects constantly remind couples of their disagreement. The bickering can be a sign of passive-aggressive or controlling behavior, but before you call a professional to finish the job, try working through it. Marshall writes that DIY projects offer a chance to practice finding solutions. Focus on each other’s positives, try compromising, and when all else fails, divvy up the work. (More home improvement stories.)

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