6 sensitive topics you should bring up with your significant other — even if they make you squirm

Just because you’re a grownup who’s involved in a serious relationship doesn’t mean there aren’t some touchy topics you *really* would rather sweep under the rug. Like, you’d rather throw yourself into a volcano than bring up certain things with your beloved. But with adulting comes great responsibilities, like having tough talks with your partner. Sure, you could turn a blind-eye to all this ~deep~ stuff, but doing so will only cause these soft spots to fester and increase the risk of you completely ruining your happy relationship.

Since we’re fairly confident that sabotaging a good thing is the last thing you want on your conscience, we’d like to gently urge you to have the difficult conversations with the one you love sooner than later.

Not knowing where your significant other stands on major issues simply won’t cut it if you want to remain in a fulfilling relationship.

So brace yourself and dive right into these sensitive topics with your S.O., even if they make you squirm a little (or a lot).

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We can assure you that no one wants to be told that they smell anything that’s less than fresh. It’s completely awkward and embarrassing for all parties involved. But because you care about your S.O., and you more than likely spend a lot of time snuggling up together, you should definitely broach the issue with love and sensitivity.

It could be that they’re going through a sloth phase and simply haven’t showered, flossed regularly or done laundry in a while, or their poor hygiene could be a major sign of something more serious like depression or a medical issue. Regardless, it’s something that needs to be addressed, and as the person who loves them most, you’re up.

2Problems in the sack.

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If you expect to share a fulfilling love life with your partner, open communication about sex is a must. You may be concerned about hurting your significant other’s feelings or are too uncomfortable to explicitly spell out what turns you on and off in the bedroom, but sex and relationships educator Kate McCombs tells Healthline about what happens if you neglect the sex talk with your partner.

"When you avoid those vital conversations, you might avoid some awkwardness, but you’re also settling for suboptimal sex.

3Feeling unhappy in the relationship.

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Sometimes it can be difficult to decipher whether your relationship is the real reason you’re unhappy or if something else entirely unrelated is bugging you. Either way, being upfront with your partner is critical so you can work through the problems together, even if the discussion leads to a breakup.

4The kid talk.

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This one’s another sticky relationship issue that plenty of people would rather avoid altogether, especially when you and your partner aren’t on the same page. But if you’re unclear on where your S.O. stands about having children, it’s up to you to perform the unpleasant deed of clarifying their stance.

Regardless of how the discussion goes, you’ll both be undeniably better off by hashing it out before you have kids, which has a sneaky way of happening when you aren’t necessarily planning on it.

5The marriage talk.

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Otherwise, known as the “where is this relationship going?” talk. If neither of you is interested in a formal arrangement, then congrats. You can move past this serious issue and on to the next. But if you’re constantly hearing the faint sound of wedding bells ringing in your ears, it’s worth bringing up to your partner.

Getting solid, honest feedback or a timetable on when you can expect the relationship to go to another level could save you some from dedicating time and energy to a person who doesn’t have the same goals in mind.

6The money talk.

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According to Time, a 2014 report found that Americans would rather discuss politics or religion before finances, which should bring you a bit of relief if you’ve been hesitant to address money matters with your better half.

As the article notes, there’s various finance-related information you’ll need to know about your partner that may cause them discomfort or embarrassment, but disclosing things early on in the relationship like student debt, credit scores or savings account balances can help you find out if you share similar goals, what to look forward to if you decide to move in or purchase a house together.

Even if you’re not married, you and your S.O. can definitely benefit from discussing all of the aforementioned topics. They may not be the easiest convos you’ll ever have, but the temporary discomfort you experience will give you the security of knowing exactly where you stand in your relationship.