Are you communicating in the same love language?
Some marriages resemble ‘war zones’. Couples forget that when they said “I do”, they were essentially agreeing to work on common goals in life, and to build a loving marriage together. So be careful not to start treating each other like enemies in a conflict or crisis situation. If a conflict does occur, resolve it openly and respectfully without resorting to nasty little tactics and blame game. Bear in mind the reasons you are together and never stop working towards communicating with each other on a day-to-day basis. Emotions (particularly pride and anger) can get in the way of effective communication especially when there are opposing views. Learn to manage emotional responses so that both parties can discuss matters and get on with conversations in a healthy way.
“My husband and I have been married for only a year, but we seem to be arguing all the time. I don’t feel respected or loved by him, and I’m not even sure whether I am still “in love” with him. I am utterly disappointed at his selfishness, and his constant failure to show any affection or appreciation for the things I do for him. For instance, regardless of how tired I am after a long day at work, I would prepare dinner; I am often the one taking care of both of us, and I don’t rely on him financially since my job as a manager allows me to be independent and self-sufficient. He has hurt me deeply with his inability to value what I do for him. Where have we gone wrong? How can we continue to build a life together?”
Coming off that high after about the first year of marriage must be one of the most painful parts of the relationship. Gone are those warm bubbly feelings, and thoughts of a perfect partnership. Some couples even start wondering: “how did we ever get together?” The problem you are facing now is one of a language barrier. Partners often have different primary love languages and it’s quite common to find things falling apart even though they may still share everything else in common.
Your language appears to be one of affirmation of words. Your husband’s is likely to be of another type – if his primary love language is quality time or physical touch, no matter how you express love by doing household work, he might not be able to appreciate it as much as you expect. This begs an important general question: how do we stay in the ‘love zone’? We must first learn how to speak our spouse’s language.
The five love languages are:
Words of affirmation, Quality time, Gifts, Acts of service, and Physical touch
When you identify your partner’s primary language and begin expressing yourself more openly and willingly in his or her preferred language, both of you will feel much more loved! But bear in mind that mastering a new language needs practise, practise, and practise!
If you need guidance in understanding and implementing the correct communication style in your relationship, you can always reach out to a counsellor. Counselling is not only for those in trouble, it’s doors are also open to those who want to achieve fulfilment in their lives… in this case, their relationship. A counsellor will not only help you understand your relationship better but will also guide you in achieving your relationship goals.