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About Communication - What Does It Say About Your Marriage?

Updated on October 7, 2012
Communication - Keeps That Closeness
Communication - Keeps That Closeness | Source

About Communication in Your Marriage

How is the communication in your marriage? What is it about communication anyway... does it matter that much?

When I was a young teenager, a doctor once told me that couples don't talk that much, and that was what marriage was like. I thought even then that there was more to marriage than a quiet co-habitation, that being married involved a closer connection than that.

So, what does communication say about your marriage? My belief is that when a couple can talk about almost anything and share their feelings and dreams with each other, they have a good foundation for building a strong, intimate, loving marriage.

When each spouse can give the other their undivided attention, and listen with understanding, they validate and honor the other. This requires active listening, which means that they are listening to the other person without thinking of what they are going to say next or trying to find a solution when one isn't required. And yes, this takes time, not huge amounts of time, but some at least. This means making time for one another and not being so busy with our 'own thing,' or work, or family - our children or extended. It means working together and building a sense of teamwork, of heading in the same direction, and the only way to find that out is by talking.

One of the biggest challenges a couple faces therefore - is communication.

Here is a light-hearted illustration of communication in a marriage:

A new husband goes to work while his honeymoon bride stays at home and takes care of the baby when their first-born arrives. Now, some-one cleverly estimated that a guy uses about 28,000 words a day while a gal uses approximately 32,000 a day.

Now our guy has been at work all day and has used up some 25,600 of his words for the day while his little lady at home has used maybe 7,000 talking to her mother and friends in between doing the housework and taking care of the baby. He's mostly talked out and may not even feel the need to use his remaining 2,400, so he comes home looking forward to dinner, some TV and going to bed. She, on the other hand, has still got some 25,000 words to use and they are waiting for him when he gets home.

They have a quiet evening together... lovely dinner, watch a little TV and then, they go to bed. As he is beginning to drift off, his wife whispers in his ear, "Are you awake?"

If he is a wise husband, he will be, or there will be some 50,000 words waiting for him tomorrow night!

Do the maths, in less than ten years time there will be enough words to fill an entire library!

Learn How to Communicate Better - Be Kind to your Marriage
Learn How to Communicate Better - Be Kind to your Marriage

But as we all know, sometimes this is not the case. The words dry up. Sometimes, there are no words left. Many divorced couples say that the reason they got a divorce was that they had nothing left to talk about anymore.

Loving your wife or husband, means building good communication. What is it about communication that makes or breaks a relationship?

Love listens even when there is not much of interest to hear; the point is that it is our lover sharing it. It listens because only when each person has been heard and validated, do they feel cherished and loved.

How about your communication? Do you feel loved, or ignored? How will you change it if your communication is not that good?


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    • jtrader profile image

      jtrader 3 years ago

      Talking is important. Sometimes it is hard when one person stays at home and wants to chat, as you pointed out. I think the quality of the communication is what is most important.

      Voted up and beautiful!

    • Johanna Baker profile image

      Johanna Mary Elisabeth Baker 4 years ago from Christchurch, New Zealand

      That's pretty cool!

    • RealityTalk profile image

      RealityTalk 4 years ago from Planet Earth


      A very nice Hub! I like to think that my marriage has been 20 years successful, because my wife and I talk. It is difficult at times with jobs, money problems, teenage children and the lot, but we still talk. And my wife is my best friend. And I believe she thinks of me as her best friend.

    • Johanna Baker profile image

      Johanna Mary Elisabeth Baker 5 years ago from Christchurch, New Zealand

      Do you think that he might want to talk about his illness but he may be afraid that if he does it will make it more real... What is he interested in? If he has lost interest in things he used to like, perhaps he could be depressed... just some thoughts thrown out there... thanks for your comment writer20 (sorry Joyce)....Jo

    • writer20 profile image

      Joyce Haragsim 5 years ago from Southern Nevada

      It's very good to meet Johanna.

      We've been married for 30 years now and we were never great talkers.

      Since my husbands cancer, he has become quieter and it's nearly always up to me to try and think of something to talk about. What to do about , I have no idea.

      Vote up useful and very interesting, Joyce.

    • Johanna Baker profile image

      Johanna Mary Elisabeth Baker 5 years ago from Christchurch, New Zealand

      Thank you for your comments and sharing a bit about communication and what it meant for you. I know what you mean Amy, my Dad didn't verbalize except to rage and I felt so unloved and unloveable. People do need to hear it, and they need to be heard too for that sense of being valued. My husband and I were together when we were in our late teens but we split up because we did not know how much we meant to each other, because we didn't say it... 25 years later we got a second chance and we have bridged the communication gap, finally!

    • Amy Becherer profile image

      Amy Becherer 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      My father was a man of few words. He worked hard everyday both at work and home. He was a rock; dependable, reliable and generous to a fault, except for communicating. He grew up feeling that a man didn't talk about things, he demonstrated his love by doing. My mother, who loved dad completely and misses him just as much as she loved him before his sudden death 10-years ago, often felt pushed to the side by dad's lack of verbalizing. In my adult life, with two failed marriages, I understand. My first ex always said "get to the bottom line". My second ex only spoke when he was venting or raging. But, even an old dog can learn new tricks, and I am just now learning the value of really listening and being listened to. Like my dad, I once felt that people talked too much and did too little. I still find many people that talk to hear themselves, but now, on my own, I am also finding those that truly listen and are open to communicating. Honest communications opens a whole new world that fosters understanding, not only of the other, but of oneself. It is the most sincere, demonstrative way to understand love.

      Beautiful, hopeful article, Johanna. Thank you

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 5 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      Very true words, Johanna. Loved the message. Voted up and shared.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Great points all of them. This is something that took years for me to learn, and lack of communication is always listed as the number one reason for divorce.