How To Communicate Effectively With Men in a Relationship
To improve your ability to communicate with your partner, try to speak his
language. To do this, it is helpful to stick to 3 things: be positive,
brief, and purposeful.
1. Being positive or playful will lead you to the most success out of the
three. Being positive in your tone, perspectives, and approach invites a
conversation with your partner. He will want to communicate more when he
perceives you as being light-hearted or positive in some way. This is
helpful when you need to bring up tough topics as well. For instance, “I
always have fun with you on our date night. When do you think we can go
out in the next couple of weeks?” vs. “You never take me out anymore.”
Send a signal that you are calm, loving, and want to have a conversation,
not a fight. Being positive will get you far in male-female communication!
2. Being brief means that you pick the key points to share with him and
make room for him to join the conversation. Brevity will keep his
attention and he will have more respect for what you have to say because
it is to-the-point. Try sticking to what you really want him to know or
understand versus the fine details. While this is tough, try to remember
that the more often you are brief, the more conversations you can have and
you will preserve his stamina for longer conversations when they are
3. Being purposeful means the discussion has a function, which peaks his
attention and interest. General communication will be viewed as purposeful
when you include the important or interesting information, not just all of
the information. Also, try tailoring to his interests and picking his
preferred times and formats (i.e. talking via face-to-face, phone, email).
The same rule applies if you want to discuss an issue. Give it purpose by
saying, “I am frustrated with your work hours because I miss spending time
with you.” versus “I hate your work hours.” Express your concerns by
giving him an understanding of why youÙre bringing it up at that moment
and its significance.
Blending positivity, brevity, and purpose into your own way of
communicating can help increase general conversation, productive conflict
resolution, and overall understanding with your partner.
How to Handle Tattle Tales
Tattletales are a common part of parenting, childhood and family life. If
you find yourself frustrated by your little informer, begin first by
identifying the positive qualities of this behavior. While it can be
exhausting, tattling symbolizes some great qualities in your child as
well. Is he or she observant? A good communicator? Honest? Fair? Caring?
Skilled at identifying right from wrong? Which qualities are you proud of
and want to develop further? Encouraging the attributes you appreciate
about your child will motivate them to demonstrate the more desired
behaviors you attach to those positive qualities. It will also help your
tattletale know the difference between appropriate, purposeful informing
It is also important for your child to know that they have the competence
to manage their peer differences independently. When your child comes to
you and tattles, give the problem back to them. “I appreciate you wanting
everyone to play fair,” you might say. Then support their independence by
saying, “You are a good friend/smart kid/strong person; I know you can
encourage your friends to be fair with you.”
Overall, to reduce problematic tattle-telling, practice recognizing and
developing the positive attributes of your childÙs behaviors while also
confidently encouraging their competence in handling peer and sibling
situations on their own.
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Uptown Counseling's Rebekka Ouer being interviewed on CW33 News