“I think when people first get married, it’s a natural process to turn towards each other and tune out the rest of life,” says Pam*, who’s been married seven years. “But,” she continues, “it’s also a natural thing to start looking outward again once you’ve had some time together.”
Look at your ceiling. Now look at your wife. Now back to your ceiling. Now back to your wife.
What’s on your wife’s face? It’s a scowl.
Why? Because while you were busy looking at your ceiling, your eyes were rolling back into your head. And while they were rolling, your wife was reading your nonverbal communication loud and clear. It said, You, wife, exasperate me.
Question: I can’t tell you how often my spouse has hurt my feelings with careless and cutting remarks. When I protest, he laughs and says he’s only teasing or tells me I’m too sensitive. Unfortunately, it’s no joke to me. What can I do to resolve this problem?
Picture this scene: A couple is out for dinner. Their faces are deadpan; their voices are silent; their heads are down. They’re looking at their phones.
Now imagine the same couple out for dinner. Their faces are smiling; their phones are silent; their heads are up as they look into each other’s eyes. Their phones are nowhere to be seen.
It’s fairly obvious which one of the above situations is preferable.
And while it’s easy to let out a sigh when you spot the virtually distracted couple, it’s also easy to overlook the potential for technology to help you connect as a couple.
Question: As a young couple just starting out, we're eager to acquire good communication skills that will help us build a successful lifelong marriage. In particular, we’d like to learn how to make major decisions together with the least amount of conflict and misunderstanding. Can you help us?