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"He Kinda Liked It" — This Woman Put Her Boyfriend "On Probation" With A List Of Things That Needed To Change, And Three Years Later, They're Still Going Strong

"The majority of the men hate it, and the majority of the women applaud my approach. Multiple marriage and couples therapists reached out and said this is great communication. Some men think that this would have saved their previous relationships."

Nadeen, a 30-year-old boutique concierge owner from San Francisco, moved in with her boyfriend around three years ago at the very start of their relationship. In the beginning, it wasn't exactly smooth sailing.

A closeup of Nadeen with the captiion, "our lifestyles just didn't fit that was it"

"We moved in together quickly due to COVID lockdown and discovered we had different levels of cleanliness that we needed at home, especially since we both were adjusting to working from home," Nadeen told BuzzFeed. "He was someone who could let plates stack up in the sink for two or three days, then he’ll eventually do them, whereas I was someone who needed to wash plates and utensils right after I used them."

Three months into them living together, Nadeen found herself tackling most of the cleaning around their home, which led to resentment. "Our arguments were always about me being upset that he's not pulling his weight, and he'd always say that if I just waited, he would have gotten to them. It was just ridiculous to fight over these things, because they weren't even big issues, but they were really important because that was how we actually lived. If you can't live with someone, how are you supposed to be in a relationship together?"

After a tough conversation, Nadeen and her boyfriend decided to split up, but they kept in contact. After some time apart, he reached out and asked Nadeen what he'd need to do in order to make their relationship work. This led them to create a PIP (Performance Improvement Plan) for her boyfriend in order to help improve their living space and relationship. She shared the plan on TikTok, where it quickly went viral and garnered A LOT of attention.

A closeup of Nadeen speaking with the caption, "I put my boyfriend on probation. I'm gonna share with you guys how I PIP's my boyfriend in real life"

In the video, Nadeen explains, "He's an engineer, and sometimes it's really hard to communicate with him without using something that he can already relate to. Plus, he kinda liked it."

According to Nadeen, the PIP involved a "shared note with daily and weekly tasks that he needed to do, and a set of things he needed to work on."

Not only did the PIP totally work, but Nadeen and her boyfriend still use a Kanban board (a project management tool often used in office settings) to help him keep track of what he needs to get done around the house. "That has been the only thing that has stuck and works."

"We also do weekly retrospectives where we check in with each other at the end of each week to see how we're doing, and that's my favorite," Nadeen concludes in the video.

The PIP approach to their relationship got a pretty mixed response in the comments. Many applauded Nadeen for finding what works and agreed that something like this is actually useful and really can help:

One person said "I don't like the workification on my non-work life....but it's so useful [cyring, laughing emoji] to which Nadeen replied, "it's helpful to organize the chaotic parts of our lives"
Another person commented "That is a very nice way of communicating instead of yelling and screaming at each other"
This person said "my bf is also and engineer, and we use a whiteboard. it really does work"

Meanwhile, others weren't as supportive:

This person said "I'd prefer not to be someone's manager or assign tasks though..."
One person commented "this is so condescending"

Speaking about the response, Nadeen said, "I think a lot of what I said in the video was taken out of context and also probably triggered a lot of unhealed hearts, which is understandable. The majority of the men hate it, and the majority of the women applaud my approach. Multiple marriage and couples therapists reached out and said this is great communication. Some men think that this would have saved their previous relationships. It's a mixed bag, but without context and in a 60 second video, it's hard to share everything."

"A lot of people asked me why I didn’t get a PIP from him, and I’m not sure what to say, because it wasn't ever about me. And people are angry that I'm making it seem like I'm perfect, but nowhere did I say that. I wasn't looking to change him — he wanted to change for us to work out. And to say that I absolutely didn't make any adjustments is invalid, because I did, but they weren't necessarily things he needed to tell me directly. When I saw his effort, I naturally wanted to do more for him too."

The PIP Nadeen and her boyfriend set up had a timeline of four months, and in that time, "slow and steady" improvements brought them closer together. "Those four months really set the foundation for our relationship and helped us learn to talk to each other."

Three years after the original PIP, Nadeen and her boyfriend are still going strong and in a great place. She told BuzzFeed that she decided to share her story on TikTok to "share this experience with all the women who struggle to find the right, loving partners because they tend to give too much, or feel too much, or be taken advantage of. Been there, done that. And you don't learn unless someone shows you that you can absolutely have all your needs met. I'm thankful to have learned these things from my friends and aunties who are in very happy, successful marriages, but I didn't grow up learning these things, and I know a lot of women didn't either."

In terms of advice she might have for any couples going through something similar to what they dealt with at the start of their relationship, Nadeen said, "If it's a new relationship, take your time to vet your partner and be very open with your expectations and what you're looking for. No mind games, just be straightforward and encourage your partner to share theirs as well. Sometimes, we love too hard too quick and ignore what we actually need."

She continued, "If it's been a few years, sit your partner down and have a very serious talk about what's going on and how it affects you and your relationship. If they don't care, you need to do what's best for you and probably leave. If they are a loving and respectful partner, and they hear what you're saying, they should be more than happy to work things out with you."

And for anyone who doesn't agree with her PIP method: "They're entitled to their opinion, and I never said it had to work for them :)."

Couldn't agree more! For more of Nadeen's content, you can follow her on TikTok and Instagram.