Honest communication is the Key to a healthy relationship.
By Jami Keller – Meaningful Mom’s Token Guy
Being the father of adult women, I have seen a lot when it comes to angst about what is going on in a man’s head. It is hard to know sometimes. There is a general level of “checking-out” that guys can do that most people are so used to that it has almost been completely glossed over.
The magic of attraction and passion in romantic love is the stuff of legend, myth and mystery. Or so the movies and novels would have you believe that if it hasn’t happened, or was broken, it wasn’t meant to be for you. The truth is that relationships require a kind of conversation that the fairy tales just don’t talk about. While I love myth as much, or a little more, than the next guy it avoids the hard truth. Marla and I raised two daughters who loved Dalmatians, Lady and the Tramp, princesses and of course young princes who want to be king.
The good news is that we live in the one time in history when the myths and legends can be debunked, and each person can have a new and more personal romantic dream. It all comes down to valuing ourselves enough to ask for what we want from a place of personal power. Once again, big topics.
So, for the woman who is managing the world’s next generation of human beings, the best thing she can do in life is demonstrate how to find this place of personal power, and speak clearly the language of meaningful and conscious agreements. Nobody said it was going to be easy, and, yes, it is in your power.
As we are fond of saying at Passion Provokers “When someone shows you who they are believe them the first time.” Understanding that your partner is doing what they think is best and if you were them you would be doing the same thing!! (You would be them….) As a guy I have needed my partner to be super clear about what it is that she is wanting. It’s just impossible for your partner to know what your thinking, wanting or needing from them. I had no idea how to show care for my wife when she was sick. She ended up feeling uncared for and I felt useless. Even after her caring for me, I needed her to tell me what worked best for her. The result is that recently she needed nearly three months of total care, and I was able to do it really well, both of us feeling loved and cared for in the process! A demonstration complete with pointers always is a good idea, knowing that it will take practice ;->.
There are three stages to embracing this power, forgiveness, reality, and bravery.
Stage One—In order to get clear about where you are in your relationships, forgive. Forgive the hurts, disappointments and expectations that have been broken, or worse, never even were there to begin with.
Turns out, most of the difficulty in understanding people is that we make bad agreements. These are the things we often overlook for a long time. We often make a series of silent agreements, like, “I wont ask you where you have been and you won’t hassle me about the credit card bill.” They are often about our worthiness more than any facts or actual events. “You be the controller, and I will be the abandoner….” And, “you rage and I will take the abuse.”
By starting with forgiveness you will get a clearer perspective. And this perspective comes with empathy for yourself and others, which is empowering. You have made it this far. It’s time to see what better outcome to work on from here.
Stage two—Better conversations. Start with being open to hearing whatever the truth is and accept that if you were your partner, you would have done the same thing he’s doing. Often people have a hard time with this because somehow it might let the other person off the hook for whatever sin they have committed against us. Walking in someone else’s shoes is no easy thing. And realizing you picked someone with matching issues as your own help. When you understand that it was the best they could do, you get a fresh perspective and will see new ways to manage the tension. Quick note: if you do not believe your guy is doing his best for you, that is a good time to back out. Just be sure before you leave. Salvaging a floundering love can be the best success in life.
Stage Three—Decide what you are worth and ask for it. Do not except less than the commitment that you truly desire. Just know that these new agreements need full honesty to survive, and will be a work in progress. There are no absolutes and there is nothing that goes absolutely perfectly.
By getting clear on what you want and accepting that the best way to know what is going on with a guy is to be willing to hear whatever the truth is will move you in the right direction. Just know, you will probably have to give him time to figure it out for himself as well.
Jami Keller is an executive Relationship Coach for PassionProvokers.com with twenty one years of relationship coaching experience, has been married to his wife and coaching partner, Marla, for 28 years and has two adult daughters, and one awesome son-in-law.