Marriage and the Art of Communication

Okay not all couples live Gone With The Wind type romances – many of us are married folk who have been together for many years and in those years we have learned what each other’s facial expressions mean, how to finish each other’s sentences, and the art of succesful communication in general.

But sometimes we goof a little.  Take the other day for example.  Devoted Spouse and I were standing in the kitchen playing with the new coffee pot I had brought home and while standing next to him I said something to the effect of, “I am SO done with you.”  He turned around and looked at me with this puppy dog look on his face as if I had just asked him to pack his bags and get out of Dodge.  Actually I was referring to the fact I had finished buying his Christmas presents.  For some reason I expected him to understand this, because I had been having this conversation in my head about Christmas.  I simply forgot he couldn’t hear what was going on in my head (and that’s not a bad thing).  So, of course, I quickly amended my statement to “I am SO done with your Christmas presents.”  The puppy dog look left his face.  Successful communication often involves thinking quickly on your feet or moving your feet quickly to get out of the way.

Here’s another example of how to communicate.  One day last week Devoted Spouse had a doctor’s appointment and at that appointment he had to give some blood (ick).  So when he came home there was a bandage on his adorable little arm where they had leeched him (just kidding about the leeches).  Now, Devoted Spouse knows I have a problem with some bodily things — like blood, especially his.  And I’m very squeamish about bandages and wounds, and even the smallest bandaid if ripped off in front of me can reduce me to tears.  So what does he do?  When he finally realizes he still has the bandage on his arm he starts chasing me, pointing to the bandage and making ripping sounds.  Isn’t that cruel?  I might have started yelling…things like, “Ack, dont’ rip that thing off in front of me!” Or I might have said something like, “Rip that bandage off in front of me and your clothes are going out the bedroom window.”  He kept joking around with the bandage and I kept yelling.  Louder and louder.  EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer, figured this was a new pack game and she joined in the fun and frolic by running in circles around us, “Gimme the bandage, dad, I want the bandage, I love bandages.”  She would have eaten it, too, had she been given a chance.

This went on for some time until I finally convinced Devoted Spouse it was no longer funny (it hadn’t been funny to begin with) and if he ripped off that bandage and I fainted, hit my head on something and died, I would come back and haunt him forever.  He went upstairs, out of my sight, and did whatever it is he does with used bandages.  I didn’t care as long as I didn’t have to watch it.

It’s all about communication and getting to the point where you can say anything and your spouse or partner will understand.  Sometimes communication is as easy as finishing each other’s thoughts outloud.  Sometimes it’s a bit more forceful, as in “Touch that last cookie and tomorrow I have the locks on the house changed.”

Always keep the lines of communication open.  Be ready at a moment’s notice to fully explain what you meant to say.  And if all else fails, get your spouse’s mind off whatever subject is getting heated — toss them a beer – fast.  Then go shopping.  And remember to bring home a surprise.

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12 thoughts on “Marriage and the Art of Communication

  1. Isn’t it funny how sometimes we can communicate with our spouses with just one look … and other times our words get totally misconstrued? : )
    It definitely makes life interesting!

  2. Kahuna and I often start sentences in the middle. It is like the other person should be thinking what we are thinking at the exact same time we are thinking it.
    sometimes we carry on whole conversations that way and it’s funny. Then again I’m glad he doesn’t know all my thoughts and vice versa… LOL

  3. Crap, we’ve only been married a year and a half, and we pretty much know what the other is thinking! :-0

    And that whole bandage thing – blechh!
    No crap about it – it has to do with finding our soulmates, the one person we are supposed to be with. Devoted Spouse and I have been like this for 26 years – we always connected and obviously you guys connected from the get-go and sweetie, that’s the very best sign. You are destined to be together in love always and that rocks. Yeah, the bandage – it’s a definite mark against him, but then again, who’s keeping count? LOL

  4. After 35 years together we think the same thing at the same time, finish each others sentences and know what every look is.

    That’s scary sometimes. 🙂
    Yeah, but sometimes we just look at each other and burst out in fits of giggles and it’s like sharing a private joke. I like it.

  5. ‘I had been having this conversation in my head’ OMG! I do this all the time! Another thing I do is say ‘this is going to come out wrong’ so he know to listen to what I say and not HOW I say it. Works for us:)
    LOL – I warn him too when I know I’m not going to say something right! That’s so funny!

  6. Master Electrician is still amazed when he says ” honey can you… and just by the sound in his voice and the look on his face I know that he wants his tea . Funny how one can tell what the other one wants
    I finished Devoted Spouse’s sentence the other day and he had only said about three words and it just surprised him. Sometimes I finish his sentences and he takes great delight when he can tell me “That’s NOT what I was gonna say.” Then we laugh. Mostly I’m right – and he is too when he does it. Remember we not only are married but we spent many years working together too so that put us together 24/7. Now that we’re both retired it’s 24/7 again and I like it just fine. We’re kind of attached at the hip. LOL

  7. Ha,
    What a funny account.
    Nonverbal communication takes on a whole new meaning in a long-term relationship.
    Now I wonder what your DS did with that icky bandage….
    I went to bed first that night and let me tell you, I checked the sheets first! ROFL! So nasty. Hate bandages. *shivers*

  8. Well I guess I am screwed, because after 35 years I still don’t know what he is going to say and frankly I don’t give a damn. He just makes no sense to me half the time and I know he thinks the same about me. Oh okay, the other half of the time he does make sense and I know what he is going to say, but I still don’t give a damn.

    But for some reason we are very entertaining to people. They say that we just make them laugh and laugh. Yeah right, hubby is always trying to be funny and then I am trying to be serious. We are like the odd couple or something close to that. What can I say opposites attract. And since my sense of humor is more sarcastic then his, this might be why people think we are funny. But for the most part we are okay and do make each other laugh. I sometimes think that is one of the most important things about a marriage, being able to make each other laugh. But then again I know the most important thing is determination, you have to be determined to stay married. If you are not determined then you just give up too easily and with it being so easy to get divorces nowadays, too many people give up.

    But I am now going to tell the real secret to how to stay married……are you ready……sit down…..make sure you have gone potty……no drinking while reading this either…….the real secret is:::::::have sex everyday, everywhere, and anytime, wild passionate sex where you rip off each others clothes and throw everything off the desk or kitchen table. But be real careful with the gear shift while getting it on inside the car……oh and yelling very loud is good too…..

    Okay, I know this is all in my mind, but at least one can pretend, but then again, maybe it is not all in my mind.

    Oh and being a good cook can sorta make up for not having sex everyday or at least I have heard this, being as how I suck at cooking, good thing I do not suck at everything, oh okay I do suck at a lot of things. I am a sucky person, I admit it. I can’t cook, I can’t clean, I can’t do laundry, I never do windows, I make him garden and I take all the credit, I can’t even get a job anymore. Wow, I think I need to divorce myself. Well at least I am good in bed, oh hell I can’t even do that right unless I am taking one of those freaking sleeping p*lls. Yup, I can only sleep then and half the time they do not work. Beds are for sleeping only, or in my case trying to sleep. And I cannot even do that right. I need to get a lawyer.

    All of the above was written under duress due to not be able to sleep yet. I better get back in that bed and try some more.

    God bless.
    You make me laugh so hard I pee. I don’t know about the wild sex — you never said who you should be having sex with…ROFLMAO – oh, that’s so funny! You know marriage isn’t all fun and giggles – it’s hard work. And sometimes I don’t like him very much, but I always love him and he knows this. We’re complete opposites – he’s extremely introverted and a complete loner – no friends, no buddies to go hunting with or play cards. I’m a raging extrovert who truly wants people around her all the time. It’s bizarre how we make it work – although I admit to getting lonesome sometimes since he doesn’t like to socialize — nobody comes to the house much. Hmmm, this is sounding pitiful. I need to go back to work or start volunteering again to get social interaction – even though I have bloggy friends and Twitter, FB, etc. it’s good to talk to someone other than the cashier at the grocery store! LOL I’m so glad those pills are working for you and you are getting some sleep finally!!! Yay!

  9. Your post sounds so much like my sister and her husband. They always finish off each others sentences and it amazes me that they always get them right.

    As for the thing with the plasters you could try this for revenge.

    Put a darning needle through the hole in your earlobe (assuming they are pierced of course). I know it sounds really really weird but you should see the look on my fathers face when I do it.

    Actually have I just given a little too much of an insight into my stranger side 🙂

    Merry Christmas Linda.
    You are absolutely brilliant – yes I have pierced ears and putting a darning needle through one of them would no doubt drive him batty. Plasters – I haven’t heard that term since we lived in Belgium – Devoted Spouse’s secretary was British and I picked up so many fun terms to baffle my American friends! I love your stranger side sweetie and wish I had one of my own!
    Merry Christmas, dear one!

  10. Due to my menopausal brain, the way we communicate is that I’ll start a sentence and either pause cause I can’t remember the right word, or I’ll just ask “what’s that word?” and he always knows what that word is. It makes me feel less incompetent.
    Welcome to my world…I do that too and he fills in the blanks for me!

  11. 36 years of him making me laugh, finishing each others sentences, him saying exactly what I was thinking so often that I tell him to get outta my head! (He complains about how messy it is there in my mind.) Love, lots of it, and plenty of good old work. No one ever said keeping a relationship going is easy and if you don’t want to work at it you aren’t going to make it.
    You said it all!

  12. Funny. My husband is just about deaf in one ear, from shooting, doncha know. I can remember a couple times when he misheard something I said thinking it was something he didn’t like. He immediately flew off the handle (isnt’ that a dumb expression?) and snapped at me while I just stood there looking at him and then said….”before you jump down my throat for saying something unpleasant that I probably would NEVER say, maybe you should be sure you heard right.” Communication, shumunication….sheesh.
    We both get a kick out of it when we mishear the other. It’s really rather funny.

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