Communication in Marriage

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Major problems in marriage are brought about by breakdown in communication or lack of proper communication. We can have happy marriages if we understand how to communicate with our spouses.

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COMMUNICATION IN MARRIAGE

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Communication in Marriage I. What is the purpose of communication in marriage? The purpose of communication in marriage is: A. To help facilitate a growing relationship between the two parties. B. To contribute to the fellowship between the two parties.

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C. To assist the couple in becoming one . Unity is critical in all areas of life, but especially in marriage. 1. There is great power released in unity (Mt 18:15-20). 2. There is a multiplication of strength in unity (Deut 32:30). 3. Unity is necessary for true harmony to take place (I Cor 1:10).

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Good marriages will have unity between husband and wife in three areas. a. Unity in purpose b. Unity in judgment c. Unity in practice

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II. What happened to the process of communication when sin entered the human condition? Man’s fall in the garden had some devastating effects on the communication process (Genesis 3:1-13). A. Man had a desire to hide and not communicate (Gen 3:8). B. Man developed the tendency to shift blame for his failures (Gen 3:12-13).

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C. Man developed a tendency to lie and be deceitful (Gen 3:10). D. Man now tried to conceal himself from his spouse (Gen 3:7).

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III. What are the two main kinds of communication in every marriage? At any given time we are communicating in one way or another. A. There is unifying conversation. Unifying conversation is that communication which draws us closer together and builds the relationship.

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1. Unifying communication is fostered by several things. It is fostered by: a. Positive praise b. Encouragement c. Honest sharing in love d. Respectful dialogue e. Trust f. Kindness g. Consideration h. Humility

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2. The result of unifying conversation is joy and blessing in the marriage.

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B. There is divisive conversation. Divisive conversation is that communication which undermines or destroys the relationship. 1. Divisive communication is fed by several things. It is fed by: a. Anger b. Bitterness c. Selfishness d. Criticism e. Dishonesty f. Pride

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2. The result of divisive communication is sickness and disease in the marriage. C. A relationship is that which exists between two persons as a result of their individual contribution .

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IV. What are some of the things that will help promote open, honest and unifying communication. Unity is essential in marriage (Amos 3:3). Unity will only be achieved by open and honest communication. A. Make time for quality communication. B. Discuss everything . C. Make sure it is a good time for both to share. D. Pray before discussing particularly difficult areas.

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E. Attack the problem and not the person . F. Communicate accurately avoiding exaggerations . G. Try to phrase your sentences in an uplifting and “ problem-solving ” way. H. Be a ready listener . That means we: Do not interrupt . Listen more and talk less . Take the time to understand what is really being said.

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I. Do not get defensive or react to individual words or statements. J. Try to put yourself in the other person’s position, to understand their point of view. K. Learn how to clarify the feelings of the other.

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L. Be slow to speak . This means we: Think things out first. Be sure of what you say. Avoid being reactionary . Wait for the right time to bring adjustment. Do not adjust in public . M. When you are wrong, freely admit it.

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N. When someone confesses to you forgive them quickly . O. Be committed to the principle of no action without unity . P. Be honest about the way you feel . Q. Make it easy for your spouse to communicate. R. Be willing to entertain a compromise . S. Seek godly counsel over irresolvable issues. T. In the end, be sure that the ground is really worth fighting over .

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V. What are some of the things to avoid things that can destroy or inhibit good communication? A. Don’t go to bed angry (Eph. 4:26-27). B. Avoid communication destroyers. 1. Crying 2. Screaming 3. Silent Treatment 4. Door Slamming 5. Name Calling 6. Ridicule

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7. Nagging 8. Interrupting 9. Correcting in public 10. Overreacting 11. Breaking Confidentiality C. Do not quarrel . D. Do not make assumptions about the other person’s motives or actions. E. Do not respond in kind . F. Do not put down concepts that are different than yours.

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G. Don’t hold things in. H. Don’t go back on a decision without mutual consent . I. Avoid all distractions when communicating. J. Avoid rambling on and on about something that has been fully discussed. K. Don’t continually return to subject matter that has already been discussed and agreed upon .

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L. Don’t expect your spouse to be just like you . M. Don’t get impatient for immediate results.

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