Communication is the life of a relationship. Where it doesn’t exist, there’s misunderstanding and fighting. Sadly, most couples suffer communication gaps for different reasons. It’s important to always work to be on the same page and understand one another because of the sustenance of the relationship.
Here are some things I think will help bridge the communication gap in your relationship.
GET RID OF THE GENDER DIVIDE
Men and women approach relationships in distinctly different ways. Without an open mind, it’s all too easy to write the opposite gender off as “illogical” or even start thinking of their differences as childish or petty. The fact is neither gender is perfectly logical. Taking some time to learn about exactly how the opposite gender looks at love matters can help you avoid a lot of problems in relationships.
Don’t forget that you’re one half of the communication problem. When you’ve been together for a while, you might start to think you know what your partner is going to say. Unless you have ESP, though, you’ll get a lot farther by actually hearing your partner out. When your partner tells you something, restate what they said to make sure you understood correctly and let them know you heard. That can be done in a sweet but not sarcastic manner.
DON’T PLAY THE ‘BLAME GAME’
When one of you has a problem, the relationship has a problem and it’s in both your best interests to work it out peacefully. Instead of going around in circles trying to decide whose fault it is, focus on how you’re going to solve it. It’s also important to avoid blaming your partner for your overall mood. Specific issues like ‘when you flirt with other people, I feel rejected’ are fine, but sweeping statements like ‘You make me miserable’ or ‘you stress me out’ means taking it too far. Just be careful.
BE HONEST AND KIND
Sometimes, because you don’t want to ‘create a scene’, you take tend to take everything that happens in your relationship to the chin. As cute as it appears initially, you could end up allowing wounds to fester and they can eventually reach the point where they’ll never heal at all. Instead, speak your mind when you have a problem, but do so with gentleness, kindness, and respect. Remember, your partner probably isn’t trying to hurt or annoy you and may be pretty upset to hear you’re unhappy.
CORRECT AS A FRIEND, NOT A COACH
This may seem farfetched, but it’s possible your partner isn’t with you because they’re hoping you can correct all their bad habits and personality flaws. No! You’re not their parent, teacher, coach, or boss. You’re their friend and lover.
Your idea of ‘constructive criticism’, may come off to your partner as insulting, and cause them to think that your love or respect for them has diminished because of this one little flaw they have. Instead of criticising, commend and encourage improvement by giving your partner some positive feedback when they do something you really like.