The 5 most common mistakes in couple communication
One of the keys to a successful relationship is good communication between partners, or just that communication does exist. When they go through a bad patch, couples tend to stop talking, and when they do, it’s from reproach, yelling or competition (to see who gets their way).
This happening in couples who have been together for a long or short time is normal, since no one is born knowing and we have not been taught to communicate assertively; rather we have been used to always wanting to be right, to see who gives the most intelligent or the most valid argument and, above all, we expect our partner to correctly interpret what we say with hints, with our body expression, as if he could read our minds.
These are some of the mistakes we make when we communicate or try to communicate with our partner.
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Most common mistakes in couple communication
1. Offering unsolicited help
Our partner arrives tired from work and tells us about his bad day. With all our good intentions we start giving advice or solutions about how their day might have gone. This is the last thing the other person wants to hear. He or she just wants to vent to the person at home who he hopes will understand him or her. What this really means is that we are not really listening, since we are thinking about what we have to say next.
2. Assuming that our thoughts are being read
Many times, we hope that the other person knows what we feel or what we want without having to tell them. This is a mistake because in the end we are basing the relationship on expectations and if we do NOT say them, the expectations are NOT met. Our partner does not carry the crystal ball in his or her pocket.
3. Label the other’s behavior
“You’re just lazy,” “You’re not worth”. Qualifying the other person is not going to make that person change; on the contrary, the risk of labels is that the person can anchor them to his or her identity and, therefore, he will not realize that the problem is more in the behavior and not so much in his way of being.
Respond to criticism with more criticism. This will only help us to further entangle the trigger of the discussion. When we get angry with someone we tend to open the drawer of criticism, changing the subject, which leads to a snowball effect, in which the snowball or subject of discussion gets bigger and, instead of solving the problem, it bursts.
5. Use sarcasm
It is also very common when we are faced with a conflict with a partner to use irony, when, firstly, the other person does not have to catch it and, secondly, if he or she catches it, it can hurt. Be careful with this, because anger can make us say things that we don’t really think or feel and we will only get hurt.
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In conclusion, all these mistakes (that everyone makes), are easily repairable if we make an effort to have a couple communication more based on dialogue, conversation, gratefulness and empathy. It is a process in which we will have to unlearn what we have learned and then move on to communicate assertively, the key to communication.
By Brenda R. Bodemer