You be the judge: should my fiance start drying his hands properly instead of letting them drip dry?

The prosecution: Persephone

It’s just laziness – there are plenty of towels. It’s also ruining our floor

My fiance, Jasper, is averse to using tea towels and hand towels. After he washes his hands in the kitchen, he never dries them. It might seem like a small thing, but when we’re both cooking and catching up after work, we are practically stepping in puddles. It’s dangerous and annoying.

When I came in from work the other night I noticed all this water on the floor. I mopped it up as Jasper was cooking and said: “I’m just going to wipe this up silently as it makes me feel better.” Jasper laughed and we carried on chatting. But then 10 seconds later I saw what seemed like three times the amount of water on the floor because Jasper had washed his hands without drying them and then walked across the kitchen again. I just said: “Hell, no!”

Jasper protested and said it wasn’t a big deal, but I don’t know how he does it. I tell him to dry his hands on the tea towel, a paper towel or the bathroom towel in our loo next door. He claims that I forbade him from using tea towels but that’s not true. I’d rather him do that than no towel at all. We live in a Victorian conversion flat with natural hardwood floors: moisture is their worst nightmare. Our floors are actually getting damaged because Jasper is too lazy to find a towel.

Sometimes he will hug me with wet hands and literally wipe the water on my back. He thinks it’s funny but I don’t understand why he wouldn’t just walk to the bathroom and dry his hands there. It would take him five seconds. There’s no excuse.

Life with me is pretty chill – I’m fair, communicate well, and make sure Jasper and I have a good life together. But I’m also a control freak, and now I’m organising the bulk of our wedding. It’s a lot of planning, so when I’m home I want to truly relax – but I can’t do that if the flat is a mess.

We’ve lived together for seven years and are used to each other’s habits, but I’m currently more aware of little things annoying me because I’m under extra pressure. Jasper needs to be more diligent so that we can live in peace together. I wouldn’t want anything to jeopardise our chances of walking down the aisle together later this year.

The defence: Jasper

I’m often hard at work in the kitchen – and tea towels are off-limits

Me sprinkling a bit of water on the floor is not a big deal in the grand scheme of things. So I drag some water across the kitchen after I wash up because there’s no towel nearby – sue me! You’d think I’d need to wear swimming trunks in the kitchen the way Persephone goes on.

The other day she came home from work and was completely consumed by the fact there were a few drops of water on the floor. I was actually cooking and didn’t have time to find a tea towel after washing my hands. Persephone said I was lazy and making a mess and ruining the floors, and she kicked off for about 15 minutes. I thought that was a bit over the top. The neighbours must have thought the wedding was off from the way she was going on.

Persephone also says I deliberately wipe my hands on her, which isn’t true. But even if I did, it’s only a drop of water, so what’s the big deal? When she accused me of doing that before, I defended myself by saying that I just couldn’t keep my hands off her and needed to give her a hug the second I saw her, and forgot to dry my hands in the process. She didn’t believe me.

We’ve been together for 11 years so we know how to push each other’s buttons. Persephone has always been a bit more highly strung than me, but this water thing has got considerably worse in recent years, and I’m not sure why. I do my fair share of the cooking and cleaning in the kitchen, but Persephone loves to make out that I’m a slob. Surely I should be let off if I’m hard at work in the kitchen when it happens?

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I don’t do it deliberately to annoy her – it’s more of an unconscious thing. I don’t use the tea towels because I get told off for doing so. If I do use one, Persephone says it’s for drying dishes, not my hands. If I just let my hands drip dry, she tells me off for making a mess. What’s a man to do? I think that we need to get a hand towel in the kitchen but since it’s so small, there’s not really any room for one.

I also just think that Persephone needs to relax a bit more and not let little things like this get to her.

The jury of Guardian readers

Should Jasper dry his hands properly or is it OK to let them drip dry?

Persephone is asking for something very simple and Jasper is refusing – just to dig his heels in. He’s oblivious to the damage he’s causing. Not to mention, it’s just such a dick move to dry your hands on someone else’s back.
Tanvi, 22

Jasper sounds like a bit of a nightmare. It’s good that he washes his hands so often, but stepping in water and getting wet socks is the worst. For the sake of his future marriage it is time he copped on and started using those tea towels.
Oliver, 33

If Jasper can’t see that this is an integral part of good hand hygiene, surely he gets that he is upsetting his fiancee over something he thinks is “not a big deal” and therefore should be easy to change? Drill a hole, hang a towel. Use it.
Ria, 34

Water on the floor gets tracked everywhere. Keep an eco-friendly paper towel roll by the sink and instead spend your energy solving the wedding hassles. Opposites attract but she’s admitted she needs a sign that he can see the pressure she, as a self-confessed control freak, is putting herself under.
Michael, 63

Jasper is being very inconsiderate in terms of the risk of a slippery floor, the mess and potential damage to their flooring. However, I think Persephone should buy and clearly identify hand towels for Jasper so he’s no longer afraid of using the wrong towel.
Rachel, 44

Now you be the judge

In our online poll below, tell us: should Jasper stop being drippy?

The poll closes at 9am GMT on Thursday 1 June

Last week’s result

We asked whether Jenny should leave Janae to her own workout routine.

90% of you said yes – Jenny is guilty

10% of you said no – Jenny is innocent

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