The best way to deal with a stressed out spouse?
A lot of it is dependant upon why they're stressed out in the first place. Obviously if you're causing it, I would stop! =) But in seriousness,
- Be supportive of them - if not their problem. Sometimes there's a fine line between being supportive, and enabling. Make sure you know where it is.
- Make sure you both have good communication skills, and are able to use them.
- Don't let the problem overshadow the relationship. Letting gloom overshadow a relationship and interfere with it is like saying the problem is real and the relationship is not. And that's not how either of you truly feel.
- Try to bring back "anchors" of happier times. Prepare a meal that you know is one of their comfort foods. Plan an activity with them that you haven't done for ages, and loved to do. Perhaps just take the time out to put a jigsaw puzzle together, together. Evoke the mood that you both used to have when you were first dating. Whether they consciously realize it or not, it will remind them of that emotionally-secure and pleasant place, and they can use that emotional support from you most of all.