As a consultant helping others develop and improve communication skills, I am always intrigued by the dynamic between husbands and wives. As a participant in the blessings of matrimony, I’m right there with you.
Have you ever found yourself in a heated exchange with your beloved when suddenly it dawns on you: “We’re not even fighting about the “thing” any more. We’re fighting about the fight.”
“You’re not listening to me!”
“Stop interrupting and let me talk.”
“I just wish you’d stop trying to solve my problems and just hear me out.”
“He thinks he’s helping, but I’d really prefer he just let me vent a little without having to fix it for me.”
Seems reasonable, doesn’t it? Does to me, but then I am a woman.
In fairness to my hubby of 38 years, I believe he’s better at this than most men. Ron has often served as a sounding board and he’s quite skilled at asking me the questions that help me arrive at my own solution. And I’m always more committed to the ideas I come up with myself, even if he helped me find my way there.
But it didn’t happen the day I wore the fancy white dress and he wore the tux and bow tie. Nay nay. It’s been a process. We had to learn to express ourselves, to be open about what we need, and to be intentional in staying focused on the thing. You remember the thing, don’t you?
So I thought it might be helpful to share an example of how that might occur. Take a look at this quick mini-movie by clicking on the link below. I think it will all make sense when you see it.