In a TikTok video that has amassed over 3.5 million views, Susan Lehman shares the three simple words that made all the difference.

Relationships can be tricky, especially when it comes to domestic labor. Trying to find a balance that is equitable and fair isn’t always easy and typically, one partner ends up doing the lion’s share of the work.

Because after all, someone has to do it. And that someone usually ends up exhausted, overwhelmed, and with a heaping side of resentment.

Susan Lehman, a hairstylist, wife, and mother of two teenage sons, shared a now-viral video on TikTok about her husband leaving a sink full of dirty dishes after having a few friends over to watch the Sugar Bowl. Understandably, she was less than thrilled.

But what happened next? Is pure relationship goals.

Woman Wakes Up to a Sink Full of Husband’s Dirty Dishes

“My husband had people over for a big game last night,” Susan, 43, begins in the TikTok video.

She then zooms in on the mess that was waiting for her when she came downstairs at the crack of dawn. 

“Look at all these freaking dishes in the sink.”

Susan Lehman via TikTok

And as millions of viewers sit nodding their heads in solidarity and feeling their blood pressure rising — because who doesn’t know how rage-inducing this can be? — Susan reveals a surprising plot twist.

She pans over to a sticky note on the counter with 3 simple words, “I got it!” and an arrow pointing to the sink.

It seems her husband, Matt, knew she would be annoyed by the dishes and would feel like she had to clean them herself so he decided to ward her off with a pre-emptive strike. It worked. (And gained him some serious brownie points).

Upon seeing the note, Susan exclaims, “What a good guy!… I just love that he acknowledges that he left a mess in the sink and don’t worry, he’ll take responsibility for it.”

She ends the clip smiling and saying, “Ah, we’ve come so far.”

@susandoingsusanthings

Leaving a simple note instantly made me not care about the dishes in the sink!! I love communication and we have come so far!! #susandoingsusanthings #marriedlife #marriage #marriagehumor #marriagegoals #marriagecomedy #marriagelife

♬ original sound – SusanDoingSusanThings

Reaction to the Viral Video

Susan isn’t the only one loving how her husband tackled what could have turned into Dishgate. The short 24-second clip has amassed over 3.5 million views, 521,000 likes, and nearly 3500 comments.

And while the majority of commenters love the outcome, praising the communication and writing things like, “The note changes everything! Amazing communication” and “I love this communication. He was too tired to do it after a fun ‘party’ but knew that if he didn’t do it, you would’ve been annoyed :)”

Others? Not so much.

Reactions to the clip were mixed, with some people calling the note “the bare minimum” and noting that “the bar is on the floor” for men. 

Susan decided to address the controversy in an interview with Today and set the record straight.

“After we got married, we definitely fell into these very cliche roles, where I did the cleaning and he did the man things, and for a long time, that arrangement worked,” she says.

“And then one day I was like, ‘You know what? Other people can help me in this house.'”

Apparently, it’s worked wonders.

“Matt and I are high school sweethearts but it feels like a new relationship,” she says. “That bare minimum note was the max for me. Our communication is better than it’s ever been and I’m proud of how far we’ve come. Everybody — our sons included — pitches in now. I can’t tell you how much our lives have changed.”

Marriage Is a Partnership

Pitching in and taking responsibility for your own messes not only goes a long way in helping the household run more smoothly but it also has a significantly positive impact on your relationship too. As do effective communication and gratitude.

And despite what the critics say, there’s nothing wrong with celebrating your partner for the small stuff. Because it’s all that small stuff that adds up to the big stuff.

At the end of the day, we all want to feel loved, valued, appreciated, and seen by our significant other. And sometimes? As this story proves, that can be as simple as three small words on a sticky note.