5 Communication Mistakes Couples Make

April 12, 2018

Some communication mistakes between couples last for years. They start as little things but eventually turn into habits. And unfortunately they impede the identification and resolution of many of the issues that arise between two people who love each other.

The foundation of romantic relationships is communication. After all, it is how you express your feelings, thoughts, and desires, right? If there’s good communication, everything else flows much more easily. But when it’s distorted or it breaks down, new problems in other arenas of the relationship may grow.

Most communication mistakes in relationships happen out of fear or immaturity. You stop seeing them as a partner; instead, you take a defensive attitude with them. Since it’s so common, it’s a good idea to do a self-evaluation to see if this is you. Catching them early will save you a lot of pain.

“Let’s learn to say things with alacrity, clearly, simply, and with serene determination. Let’s speak little, but with clarity. Don’t say more than what’s strictly necessary.”
-Emile Coué-

1. Common communication mistakes between couples: absolutism

Absolutism is a form of extremism used in conversation — and it can do a lot of damage. It implies having an egocentric perspective of the world. It also implies an inability to understand how nuanced life is. In other words, absolutism is difficulty in comprehending and accepting perspectives different from your own.

It’s one of the most common communication mistakes found in relationships. And it’s closely related to ultimatums. “If you love me, you won’t make me feel bad.” As if human beings weren’t filled to the brim with paradoxes and contradictions. One result of absolutism is when a person imposes behaviors on the other. You “must” be a certain way. You “have to” do this or that.

A couple is having a discussion, making communication mistakes.

2. Selectivity or tunnel vision

You’re using selectivity or tunnel vision when you interpret everything through one single lens. Unfortunately, this lens is negative. Everything about your significant other seems wrong to you. Even the good things.

Tunnel vision is actually one of the most common communication mistakes people make in relationships. And one of the most harmful ones. It’s like you feel the need to correct your significant other all of the time. To point out how weak or wrong they are all the time. It’s a classic communication style of people who aren’t capable of confronting the real underlying issue.

3. Extremism

Extremism in communication is similar to absolutism. However, here we’re talking more about emotional reactions. Body language, facial expressions, and emotions are also part of communication. In this case, you react to any little problem as if it were a true tragedy. Even the most trivial little thing will end up in tears or yelling.

Extremism denotes a lack of self-control. Also, it’s likely that a person who communicates with extremes is equating their partner with the mother or father that wasn’t there for them when they were a child. Eventually, this will prevent the couple from from keeping lines of communication open and authentic. It also also impedes growth and independence.

A couple is arguing.

4. Assumptions

Is this one of the common communication mistakes happening right now in your relationship? What we’re talking about is when one person in a relationship thinks they know what the other person is thinking. It’s based on the idea that they know their partner better than anyone and that they even know the intentions and thoughts inside their mind.

As you can guess, making assumptions can lead to huge misunderstandings. It reflects a lack of trust and possibly even paranoia. You’re always trying to read “between the lines.” It’s also a way of trying to control them.

5. Labeling

Labeling consists of branding the other person in the relationship with a stereotype. It’s very common after a couple has had issues, especially when one of them has made a mistake. From then on, they are forever condemned to that box. Maybe the label is “inconsiderate”, “careless”, or “irresponsible”. In any case, it’s a label and doesn’t take into account how multi-faceted people are and how we’re constantly changing.

An upset woman is talking to her spouse.

These are just a few of the most widespread and harmful communication mistakes that people in a relationship make. The worst thing is that they get in the way of you understanding each other and trusting each other. Don’t let it get in the way of your love.