The art of communication in marriage is one that requires a lot of patience, willingness, and persistence. It is one of the great marriage endeavors, for a man and a woman to kindly, truthfully, and, with vulnerability, speak their thoughts, feelings, and desires.
What we’ve discovered as we continually learn to communicate is that there are a few major roadblocks that inhibit good communication in marriage. Being aware and knowledgeable of these barriers to communication in marriage can help you navigate as you come upon them.
Shame is a massive roadblock when communicating in marriage. Shame keeps people quiet. You may have to dig in and do some hard work, or your spouse may have to dig in and do some hard work to sort out the shame you feel. Maybe it stems from deep wounds from your childhood that you have subconsciously brought into your marriage. Maybe the shame comes from that incessant voice in your head that won’t give you peace.
When shame comes into to play, its greatest strength lies in its ability to keep people quiet. Shame can keep us from connecting, which further compounds the pain.
Another huge roadblock to communication is fear. We fear what others will think, we fear what they will say, and we fear what we will lose. Fear keeps us from communicating and from connecting. Fear keeps us confined to old ways, and it keeps us from progress.
Communicating what you want or need is not always easy. Having the courage and vulnerability to bear your soul to someone else is quite terrifying at times. Fear stands in the way of communication, and when we stumble upon it, we often turn around and go back in the opposite direction. But when we make decisions out of fear, we will never make progress, we will never connect, and we will never be able to communicate honestly.
Nine times out of ten when things go awry in our marriage, communication is a major factor. Being aware of some of the major roadblocks in marriage can help you address them and navigate them when they arise.