Survive These Awkward Relationship Moments

All relationships have their safe or mortifying moments. Some are huge (like those that involve bad Indian food and the old plumbing of a new lover's apartment, for example). Some are smaller, but no less uncomfortable.

Here's how to grace your way through the four most common "uh, this is weird" moments.

Awkward Moment #1: The Safe Sex Talk

Raising the issue of diseases and pregnancy might not do anything for your libido, but it's an awfully big part of having a grown-up sex life. Since no conversation including open sores, infectious diseases and speculums can be a charmer, just be direct, unapologetic and no-nonsense. "Hey, I've been tested since my last relationship...have you?" oughta do it.

Awkward Moment #2: Morning After Anxiety

You thought you'd be in the mood for brunch - or at least a second round - come dawn, but all you want is to scurry back into last night's clothes and get the hell outta there. Don't fight that instinct. What you need is a little space, not stilted small talk over French toast. Mention that early Pilates class you never miss or those cats you need to get home to feed, and give yourselves some time to reflect on the evening's adventures before reconnecting.

Awkward Moment #3: You Run Into an Ex

No matter how bitter or angry or so-not-over-it anyone is, the game plan is always the same: detached, polite, even vague friendliness. All smiles and "nice to see you" and off you go on your way, with no snarky commentary on post-breakup weight gain, sartorial choices or rebound relationships.

Awkward Moment #4: You Have a Fight That Goes Too Far

You're in the middle of a fight, frustrated, and you say something really, really mean. Apologies are in order immediately. (You don't need to apologize for the whole argument, but you do need to say you're sorry if you said or did something hurtful.) Follow up later with a note that lists all the things you love about him/her and how you don't believe what you just said (even if you kind of do), and don't at all try to justify the insult.

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