In most relationships people have good intentions. They often think of their partners and try and do things that would please them. This is common. But in some relationships, the couple doesn’t talk to each other about what they like and therefore there could be a lot of misunderstanding.
I witnessed this recently with a couple I met. They have great intentions and actions designed for the one they love, but there is no discussion about these good thoughts and actions and whether they are what the other person wants. Each person just stays inside their own mind and keeps doing what they have always been doing and they don’t get what they really want which is understanding from the other person.
We Feel Rejected When Our Partners Don’t Respond to Our Efforts
All of us in relationships try and do things to please our partners. That’s just what we tend to do when we love someone. But what happens if we try and do things to please our mate and they are still not pleased? Do we just keep doing what we think will help them or do we wonder and discover what we could do that would make them happy?
Most people don’t investigate if something they do gets overlooked. Most people just go about their business and head on to the next thing in life. But if we are doing something to please our partner and they are not pleased, where does that leave us? It leaves us feeling empty, unappreciated, or just plain not so good.
Good Communication Involves Asking About Your Partner’s Wants and Needs
So I am a big proponent of this approach: ask your partner what would please them, and then do those things. It’s easy. You probably do this at work or in other situations. Why can’t you do this in your relationship? It’s the one place that’s supposed to ground you and give you stability, among other things.
People often say, when they come in for counseling, that they want to work on communication. I frequently hear, “We just can’t communicate.” But what do you think this really means? I am sure couples know how to talk, so it isn’t about language. Part of what I teach people to do is to better understand their own feelings of not being connected to the one they love.
Because what I really think not being able to communicate means is not feeling connected to your special person. And when we are disconnected we feel lonely, sad, and sometimes angry at our partner.
Checking in With Your Partner’s Wants and Needs Will Improve Your Relationship
So, back to asking what your partner wants and finding out if they enjoyed what it is that you did for them. These are just a couple of suggestions that will take the mystery out of your relationship. Because when there is a mystery, each of you fill it with all kinds of thoughts and ideas, and it could be that none of them are even true.
Be brave, ask your beloved if they liked it when you made their favorite meal. And if you bought something for your sweetheart, ask them if it was what they wanted. This is not unnecessary: it is vital to make sure everyone is happy. And isn’t that what we all want? Yeah, that’s it. We all just want to be happy.
Want You and Your Loved One to Feel More Understood in Your Relationship?
Read a Book About Relationships
If you’d like help with communicating and feeling understood, try reading Linda’s book Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It might just help refocus you and your partner on important questions to ask, so you can both ensure you can keep making each other as happy as you can. Give it a read.
Get Couples Counseling
Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.