“I assumed”…Communication Problems in Relationships

“I assumed”…Communication Problems in Relationships

I’m always amazed when I hear someone say, “I assumed” as a response to any human interaction. I was recently talking with a friend and asked about the communication that her and one of her friends had about how the friendship would continue on as her friend moved away to a different state. The assumption is that we are good enough friends, that we will put the effort into maintaining the friendship, but that it might not continue as it has when they lived in the same state. This isn’t communication, its one person feeling that it will go one way and assuming that the other person is on the same page.

I use this example because when we assume that we know what someone else is thinking or is going to do, we are often let down when that doesn’t happen. I see this with my clients, when they believe that their partner or friend “should know”, “knows how I feel”, or “has the same beliefs as I do”. There is such a disconnect from what is and what we think is in our relationships and it ends up causing a lot of unnecessary hurts.

We need to talk with our partners and friends about our views/beliefs/values and express why we feel that way so that they have a clear understanding of these things and hopefully it encourages a conversation about their own views/beliefs/values. This does not mean that we have to agree, there may be things that we are not okay with and in these situations there may either need to be compromises made or a decision that while we don’t support these ideals, that we still support the person. This isn’t an option if these things are not discussed.

In having these conversations; we are hearing the other person, how they feel/beliefs, and why it is important to them which will lead to a greater understanding of that person. And what I find most whether it’s my friends, family, or clients is that we all want to know that we are being heard, that we are supported by those we have in our lives, and that our feelings are important to them.

If you are having communication issues with people you are in relationships with, I’d like to help you work through this to create healthier, more supportive relationships.

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