Communication is one of the most common marital challenges. If we can change one thing in our communicating, let it start here.
I do it occasionally and sometimes don’t even realize I’m doing it. It starts off as a little annoyance and as I turn it over in my mind, it begins to turn into anger and then into bitterness and resentment. I have this imaginary conversation in my head that my husband knows nothing about.
The next thing I know, I am snapping at him for not helping me clean the house or do things with the kids, or making plans yet again without talking to me first. And he’s completely confused about what just happened.
I never asked him. I never communicated with him that I would have liked help cleaning up the house or doing something with the kids or to know what he’s planning before making any decisions. I assumed he would just know. I assumed he should read my mind.
Assumption is a communication killer and a conflict starter.
When we assume our husband already knows something, we won’t bother to communicate it and then get upset because they failed to act in our favor.
More husbands have found themselves confused about why their wives would be angry at them for no reason.
If you want help with something, it’s your responsibility to ask for it. Not assume he knows what you’re thinking or need. It’s not fair to expect him to know your desires without communicating them.
My husband has told me, if I need something, just ask. When he gets home from work, he has no idea what I may need to be done. Even if it’s obvious to me, it’s not obvious to him.
I’m sure this comes as no surprise, but men and women think differently. We operate in different ways and the sooner we recognize and accept this fact, the more conflict we will avoid.
We also bring different experiences and perspectives to the relationship, so while you may believe he should automatically just pitch in without needing to be asked, he may believe that if you need help, you’ll ask.
Communication Means Speaking Up
I know this can look different when both spouses are working full time and both are expected to share the load. To a degree, I still think this applies. Technically spouses should share the load on some level. However, every couple and every household needs to do what works for them. Whatever that is, needs to be communicated and understood by each spouse.
If you are not able to handle the entire household on your own, you need to be sure to lovingly and clearly communicate that with your husband. Don’t assume he already knows. Without your saying so, he may assume you have everything under control simply because you haven’t asked for help.
This also goes beyond housework.
Maybe you need a break and would like to go out with a friend? Communicate this need to your husband. Don’t assume he knows you need a break. Assumption is what is killing communication. Likely, he assumes you don’t need a break because you don’t mention it.
Don’t assume anything. Communicate your doubts, your needs, your heart, and your dreams. Leave no room for assumptions.
For His Glory,