FOR PARENTS, COUPLES AND INDIVIDUALS BEFORE AND AFTER SEPARATION
“The way one communicates during a crisis and the decisions one makes will determine a future of either self-respect and happiness or of utter misery.”
REMEMBER THE FUTURE!
- Learn to talk TO each other instead of AT each other.
- Learn to speak so that you will be heard.
- Learn to listen to be able to respond correctly in order to move the conversation in a positive direction and resolve issues.
- Learn how to ask questions in ways that invite discussion and resolution.
- Learn how to recognize and change destructive patterns of communication that poison relationships.
- Learn how to get past your anger and/or hurt, listen to each other and focus on creating a plan for resolving future problems in a constructive way.
- Learn to RESPOND rather than REACT.
- Do you often feel unhappy, angry, frustrated or hopeless in your relationship?
- Do you feel unheard, lonely and unsupported?
- Do you feel
that your partner does not even know you and does not care?
- Does it seem
as if your partner is constantly nagging and criticizing you without really listening to your concerns?
Over time, partners tend to create patterns of communication that are destructive to the relationship and undermine the connection both partners often desire. It is difficult for any couple to find a way through crisis situations that might lead to separation and possibly divorce while maintaining the same level of respect, regard and appreciation for each other as before the relationship was challenged.
A lack of communication skills often deepens the conflict between the partners and increases the level of anguish, distrust, anger, and frustration to a point of no return.
The end of a relationship sometimes can be avoided if a couple learns to communicate effectively.
DURING AND AFTER SEPARATION
If separation cannot be avoided, many issues will need to be resolved in order to create separate lives. Decisions need to be made such as who will move and who will stay; how formerly shared expenses will be handled and items separated; who owns items that were purchased while married; who keeps the pet. Good communication skills are essential to negotiating difficult situations such as this.
If children are involved, the couple will need to transform their relationship in order to co-parent their children successfully. Good communication skills are of utmost importance in moving through the dissolution of the original family and reconstructing functional, loving environments for all family members.
The challenge of staying focused on a positive future during times of horrendous emotional and sometimes economic stress, can seem overwhelming. Good communication skills can provide structure to help in making sound, cooperative and kind decisions.
INDIVIDUALS OR COUPLES?
Communication training has a greater impact on a challenged relationship, if both parties are committed to finding ways of communicating differently. Better communication can have the effect of making the relationship work better during and after separation.
However good communication skills, practiced by even one person, can prove to be a constructive way to change patterns of negative communication and repair the relationship. If one of the partners changes his or her way of responding to the usual communication “dance” in the couple is engaged, patterns inevitably shift and new forms of relating to each other will emerge.