Couples come to us with all sorts of challenges, and one of the factors we see 100 percent of the time … yes, we really mean 100 percent … is not being able to communicate as well as they could. Poor communication is one of the biggest factors in troubled marriages, and a source of conflict in even the most joyful unions.

Here’s the good news: you’re not entirely to blame. That’s right. Unless you’ve gone to college to become a therapist, most likely no one has ever taken the time to teach you the key to healthy, effective interpersonal communication. Think about it. Did you ever take a class on how to communicate with your spouse? Did your premarital counseling include a study in the topic? So if you didn’t take a class, where did you learn how to communicate and resolve conflict? You may have already guessed it.  You watched your parents.

Do you want a marriage like your parents had or have?

In the hundreds of counseling sessions with couples, very few have told us that they crave a marriage just like the one their parents had. In fact, more often than not, most are trying to avoid duplicating what they saw their parents do all those years.

How about you? Trying to duplicate it or avoid the same dynamics?

When it comes to communicating with our spouse, we have the best intentions, but one thing many of us don’t have is the right tools. In school, we learned about reading, writing and arithmetic,  not about constructive ways to deal with conflicts and overcome misunderstandings. Marriage is tough enough when things are going well, but when we’re confronted with stress factors like raising kids, helping our own parents through health issues, the loss of a family member, or even a tough day at work, sustaining a healthy marriage may seem impossible at times.

Been there? There now? Here’s the good news: you can acquire the tools to communicate in positive and effective ways. Our professionals at Care to Change have access to tools that have helped thousands of couples learn how to express their needs and concerns effectively, manage conflict, disagree without causing hurt, replace sarcasm with affection, become playful once again, and spend date nights talking about something other than what the kids are doing and responsibilities at home.

Improving communication in your marriage won’t happen by accident. Being intentional is necessary. Both husband and wife must want to get better at it, and then learn and practice the steps involved. There’s not need to spend another evening wishing he or she could read your thoughts or guess which actions will make you feel loved. Call us to learn the steps that have helped so many other couples rediscover what brought them together in the first place.

Other helpful links/articles:

Be a better parent by protecting your marriage

If you think your marriage needs help

Is my marriage in trouble?

I’m getting divorced, now what?

What will my first session be like?

How much time will counseling take?

The power of forgiveness

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