Thanks all for your comments. Turns out PMS-ing didn't help matters - though I firmly believe that all PMS does is make matters come more to light, and yes, a little bit more difficult.
And it also turns out that three friends, M and D and M (my M), have parallel relationships. M and D are women and were talking about their relationships, and I sat there and said, um, I'm like your partners. They turn to me with a crazed look, 'why do you do xxx then??'. ACK! I backed away from that one. But it was interesting to hear their perspectives at least for a little while - coming from a woman's mouth. My M did talk to them at least a little bit apparently, so that was good.
M and I need to get out our Myers Briggs results and use those as a launching point for discussions about us. I'm not a firm believer in ultimate power of MB but it's a great starting point for discussion. I'll never forget participating in a training at an old job. They had people with similar markers and then opposite markers perform a task, and it was so interesting how frustrating one experience was and how easy the other was. And good to know that I need to be aware of these different perspectives.
I'm back at home and must get back into a groove of working. Billy's glad to have us back, though leaving his grass inside caused all sorts of bugs to grown and prosper, which is quite disgusting. The grass is back outside. M bought him a toy and we'll see if he can figure it out (it holds treats and he has to roll it to get one out - we haven't demonstrated it yet).
Hope you all had good holidays. I'll hopefully get to reading later.