Most men need to learn how to communicate differently with their wives. Most of the time, you simply cannot talk to your wife like you do to the guys at work. Some guys can walk up to a buddy and say, “Dude, you’re getting fat!” and he would be okay with hearing that. But, obviously that line won’t work at home, unless he wants to get a slap across the face.
Christian men need to realize that their wives are, according to Scripture, one with them. They are their completers. Therefore, men need to LEARN how men and women are different and how to effectively communicate in a Godly manner – how to express ideas, opinions and even exhortations in a healthy way.
Also, many women need to learn how to be specific in their language. Women can be emotional vessels and may take up to twenty minutes to make a single point. When women speak in general terms, most guys simply can’t follow and don’t do well. Men often need to hear the straight, simple, facts in a logical progression.
Too often, women (even Christian women) play the guessing game when it comes to communicating with their husbands in stressful times.
“Well, if you loved me, you’d be able to figure this out.”
It just doesn’t work that way.
Men – most of the time – need specifics. Once they are told the specifics, they can work with that and move forward.
It is important to never speak in general terms when we are trying to help our spouse understand something. When we say things like, “I just need you to love me more!”… Well, that’s just like telling your kids, “I need you to grow up!” It just doesn’t have any specific meaning. The same goes when one spouse tells the other, “I just need you to communicate more” or “I need you to help me out more with the kids”.
We – both men and women – need to be specific when we speak with one another. We need to pray for God’s guidance in order to communicate rightly and lovingly.
There are even times when the written word communicates much better than the spoken word. Sometimes, right when you start talking about a certain subject, one or both of you may suddenly become angry or defensive. Writing your thoughts down forces you to stop and think your words through carefully. It makes you find the right words to esteem your spouse while addressing tough issues as well as how to respond in a Christ-like manner.
Here are some other “Communication Destroyers” that are common in marriages today:
- “You always…”
- “You never…”
- “You will never change.”
- “There you go again!”
- “You are a _______!” (that’s one of the worst)
- “You’re just like your mother/father!” (don’t EVER say that one)
- Lying to each other.
- Bringing up past issues that have already been addressed and settled.
These are all unkind statements that God tells us are unloving and therefore have no place in conversations between husbands and wives. These sinful jabs will keep the two of you from growing in your relationship. And you can’t blame your spouse when you act in a sinful way toward one another.
1 Corinthians 13:4 tells us, “love does not envy”.
Envy, or jealousy toward one another manifests itself in a variety of ways. Most typically, it shows up in having favorites amongst your children. Mom might have her favorite kid, while Dad has his own favorite and the parents allow the kids to play the two parents against one another. Then, when the husband and wife are angry with one another, they treat their children with more or less affection out of retaliation and the cycle is harmful to everyone in the family.
Especially when you consider that 40% of the families in the United States are blended families.
Your children need to know that next to Jesus Christ, your spouse will ALWAYS be the second most important person in your life! Teach your children what is healthy and what the Bible commands, especially when it comes to family and marriage dynamics.