Health, Psychology

Communication for a Healthy Marriage

This is a series of articles about healthy marriage. Communication is one of the essential elements in ensuring health husband and wife maintain love and intimacy. 

What is Communication?

Communication is simply the act of using words, sounds, signs, or behavior to express or transfer information from one place, person, or group to another. The process of transferring information involves three parts namely sender, message, and recipient. It can be verbal or nonverbal. Thus, there should be a person sending the message, the message itself, and a person to receive the message. In the context of married partners, the sender and receiver of information stand for a husband or wife.

This article dwells on communication between husbands and wives for which communication plays a great role in making healthy couples. 

Why Communication?

Communication is a cycle/process that involves the message, the process of sending and interpretation the message and giving feedback. Effective communication minimizes potential misunderstandings that become barriers to communication at each stage of the communication process. Researches have shown that the absence of communication among partners takes the lead of the causes of unhealthy marriages in the world. Thus, communication plays an essential role in ensuring the existence of healthy marriages in the following manner:-

  • Through communication, husband and wife maintain a meaningful emotional connection that makes them loved and feel loved.
  • Where there is communication, partners are not afraid of disagreement since the couples can respectfully agree to disagree. Partners understand that disagreement in a certain area does not mean the absence of love between them. In this way, partners resolve conflict without feeling humiliated and or degraded.
  • Partners can fall in love but remaining in love is another challenge married partners face. Effective Communication enables the husband and wife to successfully stay in love.

To make communication effective, husband and wife are expected to do the following;

Be a Good listener:  Effective listening makes your partner feels valued and understood, you can build a deeper, stronger connection between you. Do not interrupt or plan what you’re going to say next.  Try to understand the partner and answer accordingly fully.

Commit yourself to spending more time together.

Researches show that many couples spend only 20 minutes a week talking with each other on average. To change this, turn off the technology and make it a point to spend 20-30 minutes a day catching up with each other. Spending some quality time together: regularly enhances communication and makes the relationship binding. A face to face communication allows the sender and receiver of the information to also observe nonverbal cues which have the ability to send a lot more messages to the receiver. 

Be specific.

When issues arise, be precise. Generalizations like, “You do it all the time!” are not helpful as they may cause a more provocative situation.

Where necessary, express undesirable feelings positively.

Sometimes, it is normal to feel bitterness, resentment, disappointment, or disapproval. In such a situation, communicate these feelings for change to occur. However, be careful about how you express these thoughts.  

Avoid being defensive

For a marriage to succeed, both spouses must hear each other’s complaints without getting defensive.

Express positive feelings without restrictions

Most people are quick to express negative feelings than positive ones. It is vital to the health of your marriage that you uphold your spouse. Positive emotions such as gratitude, warmth, respect, admiration, and approval are like making deposits into your love account. Use the ratio of 5 to 1 for positive to negatives. If your praises exceed your grievances, your spouse will pay attention to your grievances. If your complaints exceed your compliments, your partner will dismiss your criticisms.