by Martin Novell LMFT and Daina Hulet
In books, movies, on reality television... couples who barely talk to each other, who just manage the perfunctory "How are you's?" with bullet "fine, okay, eh" responses -- are the ones who are obviously living in marriages destined for trouble. How often have you noticed a couple eating in silence at a lovely spot and prayed, "Please, don't let that be us in five years."

How Does This Happen?

In a relationship, we continue to know each other and grow with each other by the stories we tell about our day, our feelings, hopes, dreams, what angers us, what frightens us. Couples who have stopped sharing their day to day thoughts and feelings may love each other, but not know each other. Just like staying on top of what's happening via your favorite news sources, your marriage is a special interest that is even more enjoyable and exciting when both of you are up to date on each others lives.

Couples who are no longer curious about each other, may as well have danger signs emblazoned across their hearts. They may believe they have good reason for their lack of conversation -- no time, their values have changed, or they think they know each other so well that they can shortcut any effort it may take to sit down and talk. But nobody can read their spouses mind. There are no shortcuts -- no excuses for not keeping up with your mate. It's part of the responsibility of keeping your marriage in good shape.

Bonding With Words

Yes, it takes energy, but conversion is one of the foundations of a modern marriage. Ask questions. Listen. Make  the effort and the time for discussions if they're no longer happening naturally. Without that curiosity about each other, you may not have an honest clue of what your mate is really thinking. A lack of communication undermines the partnership and gives power to the unknown. The unknown leads to feelings of isolation, fears that may or may not be warranted, and knowledge gaps that can lead to a buildup of misunderstandings over time.

If you're not talking right now it may be that you still have a great depth of love for one another. That lingering love is called a legacy love, because it's built on your past. It's not an active, or current and informed, love, So break the silence! Make your marriage stronger with chats, pow wows, pillow talk, debates and updates. When it comes to marriage, silence is not golden!


 


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