In most couples one partner is more communicative than the other. Most Couples Therapy has been tough on the less communicative partner for a long time. The kind of therapy we provide at the Bay Area Relationship Center is a little bit different.
In every couple, each partner tends to take on different tasks. The more communicative person often brings up difficult topics, articulates feelings, and perhaps makes the first step to go to couples therapy. This person often wants more verbal communication. The less communicative person can feel as if they are never conveying their thoughts well enough. They might say what they think their partner wants to hear, but they always feel a bit less skilled at communicating. Sometimes the less communicative partner gets the message that they are not good at sharing or listening. Sometimes the more communicative partner becomes critical about this.
They go to traditional couples therapy, and the couples therapist tells the less communicative partner to change in the exact same way their partner has been telling them to change. Maybe this works for a moment. The less communicative partner is given tools, is told the right thing to say, and everyone feels a little bit better. The problem is, the less communicative partner hasn’t really shared his or her truth. We really haven’t tapped into his or her wisdom. He or she is now better able to appease, but they aren’t fully being themselves. Appeasing doesn’t lead to closeness, and over time, it can lead to resentment.
At The Bay Area Relationship Center we identify what’s going wrong in the communication cycle, rather than identifying what’s wrong with one person’s behavior. There’s always a cycle going on where both people are contributing some sort of negative behavior. We don’t tell the less communicative partner to just communicate more. We help him or her identify how they really feel and what they really want. Often we discover that the thoughts and feelings of the less communicative partner are not what their partner expected. Sometimes this process leads to the less communicative partner saying things their partner doesn’t like. Hearing something you don’t like is way better than hearing something that sounds like appeasement, or in other words, BS.
When the less communicative partner is able to express their truth, even in imperfect words, that contributes to a much closer relationship. If you want to make your communication better, find out how we can help. Schedule a free consultation now.