Marriage and Communication

I love you in Bulgarian is "Obicham te" while I love you in Portuguese is "Amo-te". If you think that your spouse is speaking Bulgarian and they think you're speaking Portuguese when you try to talk to them, don't be surprised. Men and women have never spoke the same language. What does this have to do with the oneness of marriage and individuality? A lot!!

When one person in a marriage insists that they be "heard" it is their responsibility to express themselves in such a way that their spouse can understand them. Some of you may be shouting "foul" right now. You think it is the spouses responsibility to understand you and your feelings. This is true, but that attitude by itself will separate you from your spouse and create a wall of individuality that is difficult to break down. Here is the key.

If you are speaking, try to speak in such a way that your spouse understands you. Use contemporary analogies and examples to their everyday life to make your point. Compare problems you are having with problems they are also dealing with. If you are the listener, then practice the fine art of listening. Pay attention! Ask clarifying questions. Reword what they are saying and repeat it back to them. Did you get it right? What will happen over time then is a beautiful and amazing thing. You begin to speak one language that both of you understand.

Years ago I use to shop at an Albertsons grocery store in Broward on a regular basis. More times than not there would be a married couple in there shopping at the same time. The two of them fought like cats and dogs. I mean they went at it with passion and fervor. They didn't care who was listening - they just went at it. I kept think that these two needed some serious help. But one day as I was walking by them they were holding hands, arm in arm, loving on one another - screaming at the top of their lungs about which brand of cereal they were going to buy this week. Then it dawned on me. That was how they successfully communicated to each other. Over the years I have noticed some "different" ways that couples have learned how to communicate - some of which I would never recommend. But when a couple learn their "one" language, they have learned to communicate and reduce their chances to end up in divorce court by 80%. So what language do you and your spouse speak?