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Save Your Relationship With Open Communication


Relationships go through hard times and easy times. There may even be an occasion in which one partner cheats on the other. It could be a one time deal or it could be an ongoing affair. But even if that happens the relationship does not necessarily have to end.

Let me tell you about a situation a friend of mine was dealing with. I will call her Sandy. Sandy called me one day to say that she thought her husband was having an affair. Because she was so upset I went right over to console her.

When I got there I found that Sandy looked as if she had not slept in days and the house was very messy. After a brief conversation I talked Sandy into taking a shower so we could go out for lunch. Fortunately she agreed and we actually ended up having a pleasant lunch.

She did share with me some of the intimate details of the problems she and her husband had been having. That may not be the best thing to do when you are having issues with your partner. But it did seem to make my friend feel better.

Just so you know though I do not advocate nor advise that you share details with friends. But let me continue and I will explain as I go. Sandy said that her husband had been working a lot of overtime. The long hours were only adding to her suspicions.

Here is a tip, be careful with accusations and suspicions that have no solid foundation. I asked my friend if her husband was being paid extra for the overtime he had been working. She seemed surprised that I would ask that and explained that he had made enough extra money for them to make a few purchases that they had been putting off.

Tip number two, look for evidence of whatever it is that you believe as well as something that validates what your partner tells you. The next complaint Sandy claimed was that because her husband is working longer hours he is tired when he comes home and they have not spent much time together.

My friend explained that her husband has not been doing any of his chores around the house. But the final blow was when her husband called to say that some of the guys from the office were stopping for a drink after work.

I am sure you can guess what Sandy was thinking. So she waited up for her husband. I wanted to know how late he was and she said he was home by 10pm. As you can imagine the accusations were flown in his face when he walked in the door.

Because Sandy was upset she said a lot of things that should not have been said. And because her husband was tired and also fed up with the accusations the argument escalated. It ended when Sandy told her husband to get out of the house.

With the details cut and dry like this it is easy to see where the problems began and what went wrong.

First of all you can see that Sandy was overly suspicious. After all, her husband had proof of his actual work time because he was bringing home extra money. But perhaps he was at fault because he was working so much. Obviously if the money was going for purchases they could have done without so much.

And Sandy could have been more understanding about him being tired when he got home. Maybe some of the money could have been tagged for paying someone to help with some of the chores around the house.

Learning how to talk things out before the problem gets out of hand is a basic tool when you are trying to save a relationship. It seems that many break ups occur because tempers are hot and feelings are hurt. Tip number three is do not have a serious or important discussion until you can do so calmly.

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Listed: October 13, 2008 4:08 pm