Welcome to another session of working relationships.
I stated in the first edition that we should start talking about working relationships just the way people talk about the ones that are not working. If we are not careful or deliberate about this, people will get to that point where consciously or unconsciously they assume all relationships(married or engaged) are not working. We need to sound it out clearly that there are relationships that are still working.
I have interactions with some couples and I will be sharing there stories here to let someone know that relationship bliss is possible “IF” we are willing to make it work.
I will use generic name to represent their identity as it is part of our agreement not to use their real names.
Sense Portal: Good day to you Mr & Mrs. A
Mr A: Wonderful day to you sir. And well done for all that you do for family life institution.
Sense Portal: Thank you so much for granting me this audience.
Mr. A: Pleasure is ours.
Sense Portal: Alright, how old is your marriage?
Mr. A: Eight years now, I think, right honey? Smiles. Oh yes, you are right.
Sense Portal: Wow! You have some level of experience there! Smiles
Mr. A: You might want to say that again
Sense Portal: I want us to keep this as real as we can.
Mr & Mrs: Sure!
Sense Portal: There are folks out there that might assume that some challenges in their lives are out of this world. I believe hearing first hand from people like you might help them to gain perspective.
Mr & Mrs: Alright! No problems for us.
Sense Portal: Thank you.
Sense Portal: How will you describe your first year of marriage?
Mr. A: Hmmnn! To be candid, it was not palatable. There were different areas we had to quarrel over. Areas like communication, managing our expectations, some measure of interference from in-laws and how we manage disagreements.
Mrs. A: Why didn’t you add sex to it?
Sense Portal: Interesting! Smiles!!
In all of these, which one will you say is the most difficult you had to deal with?
Mr. A: If I am to rate as the husband, it is in communication and it has to do with the aspect of not listening. In my own view, I felt she usually don’t listen. I feel sort of rushed whenever we are having disagreement and each person had to explain his or her side. This is usually frustrating for me.
Mrs. A: There you go again, like I will usually caught in then when we have to be settled by a third party. This was how the argument gets heated up and sometimes lasts for a week and some other times almost two weeks of cat and mouse dealings in the house.
Mr. A: The thing is; she analyses beyond what I say. When I say one thing, she can within seconds analyze 4 things. I will be hearing what I did not insinuate. It is the very reason I said she usually don’t listen. She should at least be here with me in her reasoning instead of going into the future and bring what I am yet to say or even meant from what I said. Really, really funny now, but never so then.
Mrs A: He always say I don’t listen. I always bring this up with him that he assume I live in his heart. He will say I thought you should know as if I am the one that created him to know what he is thinking about. Hmmnn!
Funny enough, when we have issues to deal with, he will rather want to avoid dealing with them and made me hear stuff like “I am thinking about what to say”, “Remaining Silent”, “Dribbling around issues”. I hate beating around the bush. What made it more complicated for me was “ in the name of waiting and thinking of how to respond delays for a week sometimes. I definitely must have lost it when he is ready.
I want to confront issues as they come.
Mrs. A: Now, that is the most difficult part of our first year in marriage.
Sense Portal: So, at what point did things started turning around?
Mrs. A: It was at a point where we realized that “IF” we continue this way, we doubt if our marriage will last one year. So, we agreed that we need to talk to a counselor.
We took this decision because we felt there was a need for both of us to adjust our approaches because nothing will change if we continue to do the same thing day in, day out.
Sense Portal: So, which role did the counselor played that brought about the magic?
Mrs. A: I will like my husband to respond to that.
Mr. A: Why are you putting me on a hot spot? Why should I be the one to explain this bit?
Anyway, let me go ahead so that food will be available for me after this interview. You would have been gone and hmmnn, it will be just us.
When we finally met the counselor, he ran us through some assessments that gave us a clearer picture of our uniqueness. It revealed that we were both acting in ignorance all along.
The so called “I don’t understand” is mere ignorance. Really I will say unrealistic expectation is a part of this. It is responsible for our expecting heaven and the earth from each other.
We were practically fighting each other on things we need in our own lives to be a better spouse. Truly, information is power.
I will not say it was easy, given the fact that it puts a responsibility on us to adapt to new approaches. It was really tough making those changes. Sometimes we lapse back to our old ways.
Sessions with the counselor really helped because it was like refueling to gain wisdom and strength.
Fast-rack eight years now, we were not where we used to be, but there is still a lot of room for improvement. We still have disagreements, but not as volatile as it used to be.
Me: Thank you so much for sharing. Can we go ahead to publish this on all social media platforms?
We want it to encourage someone out there that relationships are working.
Mrs. A: No problem. In fact we don’t mind partnering with you to take this crusade out there for the world to hear more stories of working relationships.
Sense Portal: You’ve heard it all friends. Lessons from this story:
There will always be disagreements
There is no one without weaknesses.
You need your partner’s cooperation to make relationship work.
There is a need for each party to sacrifice to give what the relationship requires to succeed.
Chose to focus on resolution, not heating up emotions.
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