How to Stop Snapping at Each Other in the Kitchen When Tensions Are High

If you find tempers flaring in the kitchen more than usual these days, get expert tips on how to stop fighting over cooking.

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Quarantine has taught me a lot of things.

It’s taught me to be grateful for my health and to never take the time I have with loved ones for granted. It’s taught me to more carefully assess risks and to practice patience. It’s taught me to be creative with my free time.

It’s also taught me that it can be hard to share space—especially in the kitchen—with your significant other. When the lockdown first started in mid-March, my husband and I were living in a teeny apartment in Brooklyn. I’ve been working from home full-time since 2016, but my charming S.O. and I were suddenly in each other’s bubbles pretty much all the time. We’ve since moved to Philadelphia, where we have a lot more space, but our kitchen is still on the small side by most standards.

Over the last few months, my husband has taken up lunchtime cooking projects, started collecting hot sauces in our kitchen cabinets, tried his hand at homemade gnocchi, and more frequently wandered in to say “’Sup?” while I prepare dinner. Quarantine has scrambled life for so many of us in so many ways, and our handle on personal space is no different. If the kitchen was once solely your “turf,” I’m willing to bet that the lines have blurred at least slightly since March.

With this in mind—and knowing that so many are struggling with these shifts—I looked to relationship experts for advice on how to avoid tension and arguments in the kitchen with your S.O. Keep scrolling for their suggestions!

1. Keep Your Spaces Organized

In my personal experience, things can get tense in the kitchen when there’s confusion about who is occupying and working in which areas. Am I chopping vegetables for dinner on this patch of countertop or is my husband using it to take apart our robot vacuum to figure out why it hasn’t been picking up my dog’s ample fur for the last week? Is my husband rinsing dishes in the sink or am I deep cleaning it?

These questions might sound a little ridiculous in theory—shouldn’t we be able to sort all of this out fairly automatically?—but anyone who’s found themselves moving (or trying to move) through their kitchen on autopilot knows that you can easily find yourself feeling frustrated as you (literally) bump up against your partner while carrying out kitchen tasks. Some prior planning might actually be required.

Divorce Harmony marriage mediator Dori Shwirtz notes the importance of keeping kitchen spaces organized to minimize opportunities for argument. Talk with your partner about what chores you’ll be taking on and in what spaces or areas you plan to do them. Ask them to do the same. With practice, you may find it easier to negotiate around each other without this kind of explicit communication

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Tensions rise in the house as Tyler makes a HUGE decision


If you’ve been keeping up with the live feeds at all, you know it’s been a tumultuous, tension-filled few days in the Big Brother house. Things were already a little heated when Christmas nominated Bayleigh and Da’Vonne to go home — Bayleigh in particular felt betrayed because she thought they had a good relationship, but there’s also the tension that comes with more POC players being targeted and picked off by a big group, which has happened in multiple seasons. But tensions started boiling over after the POV competition, when a number of things happened to create a combustible situation. I’ll be talking plenty about the live feeds, most of which will probably be in tomorrow’s recap because that’s when most of the controversial stuff goes down, but for now let’s dig into what we see in the episode, including the POV competition, and how that leads to a rather uncomfortable house.

After the nomination ceremony, Bayleigh is pretty upset. She tells Da’Vonne she’s ready to go home. It seems like she and Christmas connected on a game and personal level, so she feels betrayed. She’s sick of it all, and especially sick of battling against the main group for a shred of power. So, Bayleigh goes to talk to Christmas about why she was put up, and Christmas is in tears, super-emotional about the whole thing. Things get very complicated later, in terms of emotions and motivations and optics, but this is the beginning. Christmas playing victim rubs Bayleigh the wrong way; she’s frustrated that she thought she had an ally and now she has to comfort her when she’s the one on the block and possibly going home.

This is where Tyler gets tossed into the mix, and he’ll be important to a lot of the drama later. He’s very clearly been playing with everyone in the house, much like he did on his previous season, and now it’s starting to cost him. He’s stretched thin trying to keep everyone happy, and people are starting to catch on that he has some sort of deal with everyone. So Da’Vonne tells Dani and Nicole about Tyler throwing Dani under the bus and saying she wanted to target Bayleigh and Da’Vonne, which sends Dani to Christmas to suggest that Tyler is trying to make sure the girls all hate each other and don’t form an alliance against the guys controlling the game. As always, there’s a ton of half-truths and faux loyalty here. All this talk will eventually lead to something happening because the Committee members will have to turn on each other at some point, but for now they’re in control and it doesn’t look like much is changing.

That brings us to the veto competition. Christmas, Bayleigh, Da’Vonne, Dani, and Nicole all line up to start, while Ian, who was chosen to play, has to sit out for medical reasons. The players are gathered at a makeshift track. They must get into a runner’s starting

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