Same Blood Different Hearts

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"Nurse, nurse, we need a nurse!"  I woke up from my IV drip as I heard the screams of the other patients in the room. Apparently the patient next to me had not applied pressure to his IV insertion point, which in turned caused blood to flow freely from his hand.

The situation was not as frantic as the other patients had thought.  It was simply bleeding from a hole the size on a needle head.  The nurse was called. The nurse told the patient to press firmly to cause clotting. The patient did not respond.

He did not respond because on the outside he looked as if he was the same nationality as the nurse and other patients besides myself, but actually he was a different nationality and could not understand the language.

In our marriages, we can find these same assumptions. We may often speak to our spouse with the expectation that they will understand completely what we are trying to communicate. However, this is an assumption that leads to the possibility of misunderstanding.

In a marriage, we should try not to assume our spouse understands our way of doing things, the reason why we do things, or have the same desire to do things we want. This is because on the surface it may seem they understand, but without the exact same background, two individuals can easily misinterpret messages. Below are 2 tips on how to improve your communication with your spouse.

1. Take time to express your meaning clearly and patiently with your partner. Don't expect your partner to read your mind. Mind reading is often associated with intimacy.  Nonetheless this is an unrealistic expectation that will often leave couples disappointed from failure.  If your spouse says, "I don't know," take some time and explain.  You will be surprised, by doing this you will also learn a lot about yourself.

2. Explore and appreciate background similarities and differences. No matter the time period of your marriage, there are always things that you can learn about yourself and your partner. When a new situation arises in the marriage, expect differences to occur.  When these differences occur, don't turn to what you do naturally (which was probably part of your childhood environment), but discuss the two naturally reactions (1 from each spouse). 

This conversation will bring understanding and intimacy compared to no discussion with action only that will most likely lead to conflict (if not instantly, then later).  It is important to constantly remind ourselves there is more than one way to resolve a problem.

We can compare this lesson with having a child.  The child comes from the same blood as the family, but is also a unique and separate individual within that family.

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