Open, honest communication should be part of every healthy relationship. Its very important to truly talk with your partner. If you’re in an unhealthy or abusive relationship it may not be that easy. You know your relationship best.
Find the Right Time. If something is bothering you and you would like to have a serious conversation about it, make sure you pick the right time to talk. Don’t interrupt your partner when they’re watching a sports game, TV show, about to go to sleep or stressed about an upcoming test. Tell your partner you would like to talk later and find a time when you’re in the same room and not doing anything important.
Talk Face to Face. Avoid talking about serious matters or issues in writing. Text messages, letters and emails can be misinterpreted. Talk in person so there aren’t any unnecessary miscommunications.
Do Not Attack. Even when we mean well, we can sometimes come across as harsh because of our word choice. Using “you” can sound like you’re attacking, which will make your partner defensive and less receptive to your message. Instead, try using “I” or “we.” For example, say “I feel like we haven’t been as close lately” instead of “You have been distant with me.”
Be Honest. Agree to be honest. Sometimes the truth hurts, but it’s the key to a healthy relationship. Admit that you aren’t always perfect and apologize when you make a mistake instead of making excuses. You will feel better and it will help strengthen your relationship.
Check Your Body Language. Make eye contact when speaking. Sit up and face your partner. Let your partner know you’re listening. Show them you really care. Don’t take a phone call, text or play a video game when you’re talking. Listen and respond.
Use the 48 Hour Rule. If your partner does something that makes you angry, you need to tell them about it. But you don’t have to do so right away. If you’re still hurt 48 hours later, say something. If not, consider forgetting about it. But remember your partner can’t read your mind. If you don’t speak up when you’re upset, there is no way for them to apologize or change. Once you do mention your hurt feelings and your partner sincerely apologies, let it go. Don’t bring up past issues if they’re not relevant.
This article was on healthline.