The Recline of Western Civilization

I have just married the sweetest man alive. I have also stashed my gorgeous chocolate-brown velvet sofa with the clean lines in a room off the kitchen until we can "figure out" what we will do with the current arrangement in the living room. There's HIS CHAIR: a tilting, overstuffed recliner with matted fur and two dual-recliner-loveseat thingies that look like they were lifted from an RV. That's five recliners total, all facing the big screen, and he doesn't look to be giving up even one of them voluntarily. In my search for good advice on handling this delicately, it has been suggested that we compromise. Done! There's already a stuffed deer head hanging above the larger unit (the one with the fold-down drink holder), and I will have to make the kitschy best of it. What's more, he can keep HIS CHAIR, and I will find some brilliant way to display his shot-glass collection. I should point out that interior design is both my career and my passion! It's seriously my thing, you know? He has said that he'd be the remodeler and I the designer, so I didn't anticipate any trouble, especially when my chairs and sofa are so kick-ass, and he is capable of great taste in so many things. How do I get him to consider my feelings and comfort without shaming him for his decorative indiscretions?—Too Comfy for Comfort

Ah, newlyweds: so cute, so in love, so reluctant to end that honeymoon. But seriously, you need to quit being so accommodating. I'm calling an intervention: No more Mrs. Nice Guy. I know you're hoping that one night he'll take a big slurp off his brewski, pull that lever into its most supine setting, and put those reclining sofas (ugh!) up for sale. You can hope all you want, but the fact is he's not going to do jack until you put your foot down. If it's shame that convinces him to drag those reclining atrocities out to the curb, then so be it. If it takes shrieking and/or tears, have at it. You see, every woman has a little Peg Bundy in her (and God knows you've got your Al). It's time for you to embrace your Inner Peg and make with the yelling. I don't think your sweet hubby is being a jerk on purpose; it's just that most men are really fucking lazy when it comes to home decor. Not all men, mind you, just every straight man I've ever met. Common knowledge says couples mostly fight over sex and money, but in my house, it's that I insisted on a blood-red living room. My boyfriend's idea of high design is bright-white walls, some chrome Metro shelving, and a couple of futons scattered about for sitting time. Oh, and a ginormous TV equipped with every video-game console known to man. In his world there would be no art on the walls and no books on the shelves (why keep what you've already read?!). He has also broached the topic of a recliner on more than one occasion—that your man has five will send him into a jealous tizzy. You've been patient, now it's time to bust a move. A good way to speed things is a trip to the paint store. Just turn up with however many gallons you're going to need and remind him that since you have to schlep the fug out of the room anyway, he may as well keep walking and move it on out the door. I realize you kindly agreed to allow his special nasty chair, but maybe you could talk him into a slipcover? Though it will still be that foulest of furniture—the recliner—it would camouflage some of the filth and polyester pilling. You're on your own with the shot-glass collection, though.

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