Communication is a huge deal in marriage. It is one of the major reasons that a lot of marriages break down. If you’ve been married for up to 5 years, you might begin to have communication issues with your spouse. You say one thing, he hears another and no matter how hard you try (or yell), you just can’t seem to get on the same page.
I have spoken to lots of people who complain about not being able to communicate with their husbands or wives and I have experienced the same as well. But one thing I’ve finally come to realize is that communication is about connection. A couple that doesn’t feel connected to each other will have trouble communicating.
An article on psychologytoday.com puts it clearly:
Communication in love relationships is a function of emotional connection. When people feel connected, they communicate fine, and when they feel disconnected they communicate poorly, regardless of their choice of words and communication techniques.
“It is important to realize that communication is not the same thing as manipulation. Communication is about emotional connection.”
One mistake a lot of people make is to retreat into silence when there’s a problem. A man might decide to just not say anything when his wife is trying to bring up issues that they need to deal with, or a woman feels hurt by her husband’s words or actions and just decides to shut down. These reactions are normal for quite a lot of us, but they are harming our marital relationships and building walls between spouses.
As long as you feel like the other person cares about you and how you feel, it is easier to tell the person the truth about your feelings. But for most married people, a time comes when they feel like the other person is not interested in how they feel and so they fight or shut down in order to barricade their emotions from the pain they are feeling.
It is important to realize that communication is not the same thing as manipulation. It is not about getting your spouse to do what you want; it is about connecting with that person so that you are one mind. Communication is about emotional connection. Next time you want to pass across your perspective to your partner, take a minute to think about how the person is feeling and what their perspective might be. If you are in a place where you aren’t interested in their feelings or in understanding the other person’s perspective, then any sort of communication you try will probably end up in a fight or would feel like manipulation.
Love does not ignore the other person’s heart. True communication in marriage is from one heart to another.