I’m not going to bore you with the details. The salient facts are these:Melissa and I got engaged, I lost my job, my good buddy and roommate Ron was working part-time, he and I were stuck with the lease for the apartment we’d been sharing, none of us wanted to commit to a new apartment when we could be leaving New York for new jobs, and so when Melissa and I got married in April she moved in with me and Ron.
This arrangement obviously raised many an eyebrow, including our own. We all had our reservations about doing it, but our hands were forced, and we did what we had to do. And the truth of it is, the five months we spent as a trio went swimmingly. It wasn’t perfect, of course. Perhaps the greatest threat to peace in our home were the tense skirmishes over how to train Lyla. I’d go into more detail, but I don’t think either Ron or Melissa is quite ready to laugh about this one quite yet.
All in all, though, we loved living with Ron, and if we had a house with a basement, we’d have him live with us forever. Melissa enjoyed having someone around who would watch Oprah and So You Think You Can Dance with her, and I liked having someone to hang out with during Melissa’s 12-hour baths. Of course, the main reason we enjoyed this arrangement is because Ron is good company and we just liked having him around. But a close second was that he served as judge and jury in instances where we needed an impartial outsider and/or a tie-breaking vote.
Anyone who has ever been in a relationship has had the following thought when engaged in a disagreement or fight with their partner: “Sugar Bear, I love you. But you are clearly insane, and if you and I were to present our respective sides of this disagreement to an impartial observer, this observer would laugh in your face, have you committed, look at me with eyes of sympathy, and call the Pope to start the process of having me canonized.”
That’s where Ron came in. For the most part, he broke the tie on smaller matters, like choosing restaurants or movies. And because these matters involved him, his vote was binding. Even when the vote went against me, I kind of enjoyed not having to engage in the bargaining and compromising that these small disagreements can sometime entail. Except for the time when Ron and Melissa both voted to go see Twilight. I didn’t enjoy that.
Occasionally, Melissa and I sought a non-binding judgment from Ron on a disagreement that pertained to our relationship. Sometimes he ended up taking my side, which was obviously nice. But sometimes he took Melissa’s side, which actually caused me to think a little harder about her point of view.
Fortunately for you, we here at Don’t Do Dumb Things have decided to extend this same service to our readers, but without having to live with a guy who sneaks the puppy you’re trying to train to sleep in her crate into bed with him every night. Here’s how it works:
You submit to us a disagreement or tiff you had with your significant other, large or small. You’re welcome to submit them anonymously, or you can let us know who you are while specifying that you’d like your name withheld. Or you can put your name in big red font. The process will work best if each side writes in, briefly explaining the facts of the matter and the reasoning behind their stance. To ensure fairness, each side is limited to a single paragraph of advocacy (feel free to submit a joint statement of factual background if necessary).
Ryan, Christian, and I will review these statements and will each write a brief response ruling in favor of one party or the other. In order to keep things gender-balanced, our respective wives, Macy, Melissa, and Rebecca will do the same. In the event of a 3-3 tie, we’ll bring in Ron (who, as a flaming metrosexual, acts in a gender-neutral role here) to cast the final vote. After which you will submit to our judgments (we are especially good on family planning issues). So there you have it: the opportunity to confirm once and for all that you’re not the crazy one, you’re the sane one. Please send submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In our infinite foresight, we’ve already prepared the first entry in our special DDDT Series: Tiebreakers. Tune in tomorrow for the first episode.