Click, flick, switch, crumple, slam, *SIGH* – these are the sounds that emanate from the silent battles that take place in every household.

One morning, over coffee with friends I casually mentioned that a hilarious contest is played out in our house every day from late October until April. The central heating thermostat mysteriously glides between being set at 16 and 19. It’s never commented upon but every so often one or other of us will decide that the setting is far too low/high and adjust it accordingly. “Oh, silent battles”  said one of my friends and the name stuck. Everyone else had a story to share.

There is the husband who carefully unwraps packages and leaves the wrapping discarded just beside rather than IN the bin. The spouse who never fully closes a drawer. When choosing a new kitchen a solution in the form of soft close self close drawers was (silently) selected. With great ingenuity and a fine sense of balance the spouse has managed to defeat technology and all drawers remain open an inch or so after use. Another couple silently battle over the thermostat on the fridge (it’s very difficult to reach apparently, so stealth techniques are required and late night fridge raids are not for snacks).

I loved the tale of one girl whose husband has developed an internet shopping habit while he is stationed overseas. The shopping is not the problem but the failing to inform her of impending deliveries can create issues. One day she arrived home to find a boat engine had been delivered and left in her living room (this is Skye – locked doors are a rarity and the postie usually just walks in never mind ringing twice). In a supreme example of the silent battle this lady stepped over the engine and carried on in this manner for several weeks until her husband returned home and moved it to make way for the projector screen that had just arrived.

Another friend tells of the white knuckle experience that is being driven by their partner. A rallying approach is taken to small Scottish country roads, braking is a cornering afterthought and potholes to be targetted rather than avoided. However, self medicating and offering to drive whenever possible maintain the equilibrium.

And that really is my point. While these things are annoying (and they really are bloody annoying) they are small in the grand scheme of life and relationships. While I am a huge advocate of talking and good communications I need to remind myself sometimes that the best kind of communication can be unspoken, can be acceptance, can be tolerance. Making these silent battles the stuff of humour makes and sustains the relationship.

In the interests of balance I asked my husband if there were any silent battles of his own that he was fighting with me? Nothing apparently, but if I could , “just once, remember to take the f*%(£$g keys out of the f*”£%%£^g front door” that would be peachy.

front door key, key, gorilla


Rosie x

image Rosie Woodhouse at Love Skye Photography

This post is linked to #sundaystars

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