Communication means talking with each other freely. Love means unselfish care for the other. Some people says, “ A real man doesn’t need to talk with his wife” but the fact is, a man will begin to enjoy marriage more when he realized, “It’s good for me to talk freely with my wife” As I communicate with her we understand each other; our love grows. There are three levels of communication: Perhaps right now your communication is zero. Don’t worry. You and your husband/wife can step up to level 1 and then to level 2 and 3. When you succeed in reaching level 3, you will find the joy of romantic friendship.
Level 1: Talk about what happened each afternoon when you and your husband/wife arrive home, tell each other what happened during and after the day. Tell about the car accident you saw, or how your cousin passed his exam… or whatever happened. It’s amazing that many couples fail to communicate even at that simple level. They stay in the same house but they seldom talk. Don’t be like that. Communicate. Everyday greet one another with a hug, and talk about what happened during the day.This will become a habit that you enjoy. In addition to telling about your day, ask your partner. “ what happened in your life today?” That question is important. If a husband never ask his wife about her days, she wonders, “ Does he love me?”
We all like to be asked questions that show sincere interest.When anyone asks me questions about my work or my ideas, I think, “ Isn’t he friendly!”
In marriage too, we should use questions to show our interest in each other. Your marriage will improve as you simply talk about your day and ask each other questions. That is level 1. But don’t stop there,move on to level 2.
Level 2: Talk about us.Level 2 of communications is talking about us, our money, our children, our relatives, our plans for the future… for example, a husband can discuss with his wife questions such as: what school should our children attend? Should we ask my cousin to stay with us? Should we buy a new car?
One day Abner and Lydia were discussing his mother. As they talked, they began to disagree and quarrel.
In that case, what should they do? They should continue talking until they reach agreement. But Abner and Lydia didn’t do that instead, they stopped talking before reaching an agreement. After that they thought, “ To avoid another quarrel, we must not talk about his mother.”
Later they had a quarrell about money. Again they stopped talking before reaching an agreement. So they began avoiding the topic of money.
After many years they had many topics that they couldn’t talk about that killed their communication.
Level 3: Talk about our feelings. In level 3 we open the door of our heart,allowing our marriage partner to see our feelings. Stephen told his wife, “ today my brother got angry and shouted at me. And my father supported him” ( That report of what happened was level 1) Then Stephen and his wife discussed how his problem could be solved. ( That was level 2 because it involved us and our relatives) After that his wife asked; “ How do you feel now?” Stephen replied. “ I worry.I fear that our family relationships will decline.I also feel hurt because…” That sharing of feelings was level 3 communication.
When we communicate at level 3 our joys are doubled because the happiness of one becomes the happiness of the other. And our burdens are cut in half since we share the load.