Relationships 101:
When he goes from cute to annoying

by Bonnie Burton

The way he snaps his bubble gum and twirls pens while studying originally caused a flurry of affection in your heart. His habit of whistling the latest Beastie Boys tune, used to make you swoon. Now after a few months of dating, you find that has once-endearing habits give you headaches. How do you stay with someone who snorts when he laughs?

Before you turn into Little Miss Judgment, keep in mind that you fell head over platforms for him in the first place for some reason. Love may have blinded you of his habit of hogging the remote, but you obviously liked him for more than his TV manners, right?

Here are a few tips to help you see past his bizarre behavior.

Turn his quirks into a game.
Every time he says "da bomb," or some other trite slang expression between every other word, give yourself a point. Or if he makes up words trying to pass them off as a legit language, give yourself 10 points. When you reach 100 points, make him take you out for ice cream.

Learn to relax.
Just because the poor guy can't seem to settle on one radio station while driving, or calls you during the season finale of "Lost," doesn't mean you need to give him a piece of your mind. If you want your relationship with him to be relatively drama-queen free, cut him some slack. He probably doesn't even know he's being a pain in the you-know-what. Take a deep breath and let him be himself.

Join a support group.
Chances are your boyfriend acts just like most guys in relationships. If his behavior is more than just a bit bothersome, ask your friends about their boyfriend grievances. Give each other support and a place to vent. Heck, after hearing their stories of how Bobby likes to make farting noises in movie theaters, or how Richard plays air guitar to the background music in the grocery store, you might be counting your lucky stars.

Be honest.
If he honks his car horn when he picks you up for a date, instead of coming to the door offends you, tell him. When you let your feelings stew, you risk blowing up at him for something that doesn't have anything to do with it later. Nip it in the bud. Tell him your major pet peeves in the beginning of the relationship so maybe he'll get the hint before it gets worse. And give him an opportunity to do the same. You might be cute, but you're not Polly Perfect either.

Know the difference.
Keep in mind some of his actions may be more than just obnoxious, but dangerous. When he screams out his car window at other drivers on a regular basis, it's called road rage. This isn't simply a pestering habit, but a verbal assault that could very well escalate into physical violence. Don't put up with it if he cuts you down or makes fun of your feelings. Respect should be a main ingredient in a relationship, not just the optional sprinkles on top.

If you follow these handy tidbits of advice, you should be able to get over those small obstacles that get in the way of enjoying your time together. After all you don't want to end up like your parents who fight over who left the toilet seat up, now do you?

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