Thursday, March 13, 2008

03/13/08 - Authentic Communication

How well do you communicate? I mean really communicate?

Many of you are single who read this blog and I believe a great tool you can sharpen as you wait on God's timing for marriage, is the ability to communicate.

The day my husband and I began to date (which was five years on Tuesday!) we said that we would be as honest as possible. We never held back our thoughts or feelings in fear that we'd ruin this relationship. We never feared the outcome of talking as freely and openly as we could.

We covered all issues in those first few weeks of dating. No topic (beside anything that was not appropriate) was off limit. We talk and shared about everything.

Learning authentic communication in my single years helped me know what type of communication I wanted in my marriage. I knew I wanted to feel like I could share anything with my mate.

One may think that all couples communicate this freely, but surprisingly they don't. One married friend told me I "trained" John to talk so freely and there are just topics she and her husband do not talk about.

Another woman shared with me that it took her two years to bring up a topic in her marriage that was "difficult" to address.

I received another e-mail from a young guy who was sharing how he recently broke up with his girlfriend and although they started with very clear intention (dating with marriage in mind) he felt like there were issues (things that would be appropriate to share) he could not talk to her about. He felt like these issues would just "go away" over time.

Practice authentic communication in your same sex friendships, it will greatly aid you as you move towards marriage with the mate God has for you!


rachaelizabeth said...

i really appreciate this post. it makes sense and sounds really practical. even though i know your point is to stress communication, i'm wondering if you could go deeper and give examples of everything you and john talked about. it actually surprised me that you said that. i guess i'm trying to sort out this whole emotional intimacy thing and what it means practically. like of course if you're going to marry someone you want to know where they stand on things so that it's clear beforehand, but then again, i think that'd create alot of emotional intimacy? it's just kind of all confusing. how do you know how much to open up as your relationship is unfolding and growing? you said you would walk away from him at times, but then again you praised gretchen for increasing her emotional intimacy (i think) in an appropriate amount, but i just don't know what that looks like practically for me. do you just take it as it comes?

Heather Paulsen said...

Rachel...I'll cover this EXCELLENT question tomorrow!