How to Communicate With Your Mate
“I don’t understand what has happened to us,” explains George. “Before we were married we had so much to talk about. Now we never talk. George says I never tell her anything, and she wouldn’t listen if I did. She isn’t interested in anything I’m interested in.’
Experts claim that one of the most serious problems in marriage and a prime cause of divorce lies in the inability or reluctance of couples to communicate. Many of these couples know they aren’t communicating, but they aren’t sure exactly what it is they are or are not supposed to do. Although communication is a complex process, it isn’t complicated.
Communication in marriage is complete when a couple can handle three principles consistently: (1) when they can effectively utilize the fundamentals involved in speaking and listening, (2) when they can resolve conflicts through constructive methods, and (3) when they spend time on a daily basis in an intimate sharing of feelings.
What Communication Is
We often assume that if someone’s lips are moving, communication is taking place. But the two-way street of conversation comprises the giving and receiving of information. Moreover, it involves more than talking. It is the receiving or listening process as well. To this twofold process we should add a third dimension—understanding. Frequently we think we understand what our mates are saying, but what we hear is not what is meant. We want the other person not only to listen to what we have to say but also to understand.