Communications In Relationships

Posted by Frank Gillespie MA

Why is communication important in a marriage?

Understanding why it is important is the first step in improving communication in your marriage. It is a process, and learning how that process works brings couples closer by developing a uniquely shared language. Marital communication doesn’t have to be lengthy or overflowing, though to be successful. Stating our thoughts clearly and honestly minimizes confusion which increases relationship commitment, which is directly related to relationship satisfaction. Couples with poor communication are often caught in a vicious cycle where poor communication contributes to marital dissatisfaction, which is exacerbated by the inability to communicate successfully and the cycle -- when not corrected -- degrades the relationship. Often assumptions take over concerning what is being thought.

What is effective communication in marriage?

Many couples talk about what needs to be done, paying bills going shopping and working out who does what amongst many other tasks and chores, but not everyone communicates in a way that enhances the ability to improve the relationship.

Communication within a relationship is the key for maintaining a close and loving connection between couples. Good communication in marriage is when each party can speak openly and freely about their feelings, thoughts and concerns. Both partners talk in a respectful way being mindful of the other person’s feelings while still communicating their feelings honestly, avoiding attacking, hurtful or controlling comments. Effective communication requires active listening and purpose to understand what the other is saying even if they have a different opinion. It is a case of understand before being understood and not prescribing before diagnosing!

What kinds of communication problems exist in a relationship?

Communication problems in marriage include a lack of listening skills, sympathy and understanding, inability to share and express true feelings, inability to control anger during arguing, competitive attitude towards spouse, lack of compromise etc. A common problem is the way couples communicate their dissatisfaction. Complaints about specific problems are unavoidable, but it can be very destructive if it becomes criticism towards the other person`s personality. Strong criticism or even contempt can only beget defensiveness which finally ends in stonewalling, or emotional withdrawal from interaction or conflicts. This way things are more likely to be left unresolved and erupt at a later time. Bad communication habits are usually rooted in learned behavior patterns from the childhood and neglecting them can only escalate the problems. Bad or lack of communication can be the root of many serious marital problems, and is one of the leading reasons for divorce.

What are the most important communication skills for couples?

There are moments in every marriage when communication between husband and wife comes to a standstill. Keeping in mind a few important tricks on how to communicate in marriage can help you to overcome ups and downs. The most important thing is to be empathetic: put yourself in your partner’s shoes, have compassion for your spouse's point of view. Also look at how your own behavior affects your partner. Every time you feel the urge to make a critical remark, put yourself in his or her shoes first. Communication is as much about listening as it is about expressing yourself. By doing so, you can take the conversation to a deeper, more intimate and honest level. Use encouraging body language to help your partner feel heard. When discussing problems, be open with your partner. If you keep your problems or worries secret, they'll begin to build up and become a wall between you and your spouse.

How to solve communication problems in a relationship:

Communication skills can be learned and developed; there are effective solutions for improving communication in marriage. The first step is to recognize the bad communication habits and secondly to learn new techniques for communicating with your spouse. Marriage counseling can be the answer to the question of how to improve communication in marriage. The professional therapist can help acquire new communication techniques for couples with special exercises.

Frank Gillespie MA

Frank Gillespie has a Master's Degree in Counseling from LaSalle University in Philadelphia. He is a nationally Certified Counselor (NCC). He has provided therapy for over 23 years. During his career, he has helped more than 10,000 people move past their obstacles towards reaching their potential and fulfillment in their lives. He practices Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with a warm and nurturing approach. In addition to being a therapist, Frank has been an adjunct college professor teaching social work, a clinical consultant, a clinical director, and a seminar speaker. Frank has recently retired from his full time practice to focus on a part time online practice. He is married. He enjoys listening to music, watching sports, power walking, swimming, reading and writing.


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