REAL Couples – REAL Issues – REAL solutions
This blog is in a series inspired by real conversations between real couples preparing for marriage. Their words come for a self-guided, self-paced marriage prep eCourse available at www.OnlineMarriagePreparation.com.
STEP ONE: How do we define our issue?
We need a consistent communication plan when one of us is working out-of-town.
STEP TWO: Why is this important to me/us?
Bride: Consistency is important to me, and I get nervous and anxious when I don’t know what’s going on with you. If we relax on our communication while you’re away I feel it opens the door for opportunities of infidelity and less of a connection to our commitment to each other. Sometimes our communication is great and at other times it’s more relaxed and I tend to get nervous, especially when we’re apart.
Groom: We don’t talk or text much when I’m out of town working, and I’m not able to be home all the time. Maybe getting an iPad, so we can FaceTime whenever we want.
Bride’s Feelings: Guilty, ignored, uncomfortable, depressed, hopeless, weak, threatened, powerless, lonely, negative, overwhelmed.
Groom’s Feelings: Sad, open, excited, positive, confused, determined, motivated, annoyed, stubborn, encouraged, afraid.
STEP THREE: What will a better future look like for us when this is resolved?
Bride: I feel like this is an issue that we will always be working towards to make better. Towards you I will have less fear while you travel and towards myself I hope I will feel more peace. But we need to come up with a communication plan, and then stick to the plan. I need to be more patient and open with you when I start to feel anxious. We could both be more proactive in our communication by texting, expressing our feelings more and letting the other know if we’re feeling anxious instead of getting frustrated with each other.
Groom: I could answer my phone throughout the day and let you know when I get off work. I would be happy to set a time for talking every day when I’m gone.
STEP FOUR: What are our best ideas?
Idea One: Have a set time to talk, and communicate through text when we set plans or plans
Idea Two: Be more open and expressive when we communicate
STEP FIVE: What will I/we actually do?
We will both be more expressive and stick to our set time to talk.
STEP SIX: How will we know that we’re making progress?
We’ll both feel less frustrated and anxious.