Expectations and Healthy Communication in Relationships
First off, the communication avenue was different. Texting is not the same as talking. Over text message, you cannot hear tone of voice or sense emotion. You’ll assume the other person’s intent based on your own feelings at the time. Difficult conversations need to happen in person, or at least over the phone.
Secondly, did you notice the pattern of blame in the first example? I’ve written more about the dangers of the “blame game” in a previous post. Instead of passing blame in the second example, however, the couple talked about how to keep the problem from happening again, including a healthy dose of humor and gratitude. It was simply an accident – not a battle of “you always” or “you never.”
-Make sure each person has eaten and rested. Avoid the human weaknesses of “hangry” and sleepy.
-Take time to calm down if the issue is emotional charged.
-Offer a heads-up to the other person that you’d like to discuss something important later.
-Don’t vent to all your family and friends before you solve the problem with your spouse.
-Give the conversation plenty of time; don’t rush.
-Don’t go looking for a fight or to prove a point. Work on solving the problem, not winning the argument. Hopefully these conversations are not arguments!These conversations will be helpful as each spouse matures beyond the “blame game” into a sincere conversation about wants and needs. Each person needs to be willing to give and serve, as well. It is easier for a spouse to serve and care for the other if s/he knows what is expected of them.
Good luck in all your spousal conversations!