Authentic Communication Part 1

Session 8 | Episode 1

Authentic Communication

In previous sessions we have covered many aspects of the marriage relationship.  One theme that should have been central to all these areas is that we want to build ‘oneness’ in our marriages.  The opposite of oneness is isolation.  Building oneness requires good communication skills, especially when addressing conflict.

When couples marry, it’s like two mini cultures colliding to create a new culture.  This process of changing and adapting to one another inevitably leads to conflict.  If conflict is approached correctly, it is healthy because it enables the individuals to mature and grow and draws the couple closer together.  That’s the exciting potential of conflict

If conflict is approached correctly, it is healthy because it enables the individuals to mature and grow and draws the couple closer together.

If conflict is approached correctly, it is healthy because it enables the individuals to mature and grow and draws the couple closer together.

The not so exciting side of conflict is change, and sometimes there is pain with the change.

Just like any life skill, we all need help learning how to constructively engage in conflict.  Some of these skills are:

  1. Looking for win/win solutions. If your partner loses, you also lose, so seek for solutions where you both win.
  2. Assume the best of your partner. Sometimes past pain and failure in relationships causes us to make incorrect assumptions and assign inaccurate motives to our partner’s words and actions.  If we assume the best, we are unlikely to create a conflict where none exists.
  3. Focus on facts, not judgements.
  4. Make the problem the problem, not the person. When we disconnect behaviour from character, it allows us freedom to work as a team to tackle the problem.
  5. Sometimes conflict exposes underlying issues or attitudes that also need to be addressed. The couple should acknowledge there are problems and, without blaming, find solutions together.

Unresolved conflict can intensify the emotions of future conflicts, so we want to work hard at settling conflicts before they create bitterness and isolation in the relationship.

Presented by

Patty Borgert

Patty Borgert

Patty has a degree in Family Studies from New Mexico State University in the US. She has lived in Africa for 45 years and has worked in Eswatini, Zimbabwe and South Africa. She and her husband, Ken, have been married for thirty-five years and have two children. They have been working with FamilyLife, a ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ, for thirty-four years.

Patty Borgert

Patty Borgert

Patty has a degree in Family Studies from New Mexico State University in the US. She has lived in Africa for 45 years and has worked in Eswatini, Zimbabwe and South Africa. She and her husband, Ken, have been married for thirty-five years and have two children. They have been working with FamilyLife, a ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ, for thirty-four years.

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