(ThyBlackMan.com) Communication is a very important part of any relationship. In marriage communication is one of the pillars that can cause the relationship to flourish or kill such. A marriage is made up of two different individuals and neither are perfect. In order to come together as one and live in harmony spouses have to know how to talk to one another, and how to express their feelings honestly yet respectfully. This can become a challenge when one is angry, or feel they are not being heard. Far too often “I feel…” tends to determine the manner of communication, and that can be a disaster. Love is important in a marriage, but its often not an issue of real love loss when communication begins to deteriorate. Unfortunately, some people have problematic communication skills, and this is brought into the marriage.
Below are five ways to better communicate with your spouse.
1. Always consider tone when addressing a matter. We all have a tendency to get upset, or passionate, about something that is a serious issue. However, it is very important to give the communication you want to receive. This tends to call for a bit of self-control depending on the situation. You do not want to begin communicating with your spouse by yelling, and or cursing. Remember you would be upset if your spouse comes at you in that manner verbally. If you are upset, take a moment to cool off so you can address your spouse calmly. Sometimes a situation is a matter of misunderstanding. Things could be resolved without an issue if you pay attention to tone.
2. Avoid bringing the past into a current situation. Harping on where a person has been, or what was supposedly forgiven is a recipe for communication disaster. When you are addressing a matter stick to the matter and speak to your feelings in that moment. It is okay to explain what you see as a pattern of behavior. However, bringing up old matters just to load your argument is going to make your spouse defensive, or they might just shutdown. Either of those positions will lead to unresolved issues. Try to avoid the “you always…” positions if the goal is truly to communicate and see results.
3. It is very important not to talk down to your spouse. Calling them an idiot is not going to resolve a matter. Speaking to them, even calmly, as though they are stupid will only serve to agitate the situation further. Try to refrain to name calling, talking to them slowly as if they are slow mentally, or mocking them in any manner that would be an insult to their intelligence. Remember you love this person and loved them enough to marry them. Communication is not meant to destroy, but to build.
4. Your spouse is an individual. It is important to remember this when communicating. Comparing your spouse to their parents, an ex, or someone else you both know is not healthy. In the comparison the communication can become combative as your spouse is now seeking to defend themselves verses have a real discussion. Keep in mind that the only people that are in your marriage are you, and your spouse. They may have things in common with their parent…but that could also apply to you. Leave others out of the communication unless there is something to address pertaining to that individual specifically.
5. Communicate to truly understand, and comprehend, your spouses’ position. This is something both parties must be willing to give. Without understanding and comprehension the best communication skills are ineffective. Understanding does not mean you have to agree with your spouse, but it allows you to see their position. In seeking to understand spouses can better know each other and what was intended in a given situation. You may find that they didn’t mean to offend you, or that they actually have a point. When spouses can understand each other, they can better understand how to love one another and communicate in a manner that allows them to build each other up.
No marriage can survive without effective communication which can lead to understanding. There will be times when you spouse will make you furious, or you simply can’t understand why it seems you keep repeating yourself about a matter. Remember they are human and address them in the manner you wan to be addressed. Keep others out of your communication with your spouse as you are both individuals. If you need to cool off before speaking, or write your thoughts down, do so as this can help control tone and tempers. Never forget communication is not simply about needing to be right in a given situation. Communicating is about understanding and building on your relationship.
Staff Writer; Christian Starr
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