Communication in Marriage

Wives and husbands communicate for different reasons. There is an obvious gender difference. Men most often communicate to solve problems. Women most often communicate to express emotions and to be understood.

A wife doesn't like to be interrupted with his solutions, when she's trying to let go of negative emotions. Her solution is for him to listen and understand her. Problem solving is not her main objective.

Listening to your wife helps her to vent negative emotions. She wants her husband to understand how she feels. Active listening to understand her is the key.

Your wife may need to tell the same story again and again. It's not because you were not listening. It's because she is still dealing with the emotions of the story. She may ask, "Are you tired of hearing this?" She hopes that he wants to understand her feelings.

If the husband is only listening to fix the problem or gain the facts, he may be tired of the story. If he understands that she is dealing with her feelings, and really needs him to listen, he is glad to listen because he loves her.

The husband who listens with patience and kindness to his wife, becomes the person who understands her. He provides love, gentleness and support. "Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them" (Col. 3:19, NIV).