It happens to many couples.
Communication is such a fickle thing, and the lines can become blurred every so often, especially when love and feelings are involved.
Even those who think that they are immune to the confusion of conflict can find themselves drawn into a communication breakdown when they least expect it, and chaos ensues.
Even those who assume to be better equipped than many others are not immune.
This happened to my friend on the weekend, and until to be quite honest, it took her by surprise.
Her spouse told her something that really hurt her feelings, and she automatically lashed back in defence.
It was a silly argument, over something as simple as a misplaced bottle of perfume.
But to her, it represented something much deeper that had been simmering away for a couple of weeks.
My friend get frustrated at having to search for something when it is not where she expect it to be, worse still when her partner has shifted it and I don’t know the first place to begin searching.
Perfume, needles and thread, car keys, a Tupperware container to store her baking soda in, covers for their outdoor chairs, all were examples of instances where she had to turn the house upside-down.
A simple answer from my spouse when these things were shifted would have saved my friend a lot of time and frustration.
And the answer she got?
That she need to open her eyes and organize herself better.
My friend was gutted.
When she come home from work, she exercise the dog and cook dinner so that it is on the table by the time her husband reaches home.
The house is always spotless and warm, as she is very conscious of coming home to a tidy environment.
She see this as a fundamental part of her role in coming home first which takes a lot of time.
To imply that she is still required to organize herself better really hurt.
My friend did not expect praise but she hoped that her efforts were at least appreciated.
Instead she got told off that she was not required to cook dinner every night.
That was interpreted by her – as fellow woman – as ingratitude and hurt even more.
So where to from here?
Her husband felt guilty at coming home every night to the perfect household, where she felt guilty if it was not perfect.
It was never about her trying to make my spouse feel guilty, but it seems it did.
And this is where the communication fell down.
He misinterpreted her efforts, and she misinterpreted his response.
It was all about communication which did not take place at all.
She needed her husband to at least keep her informed of where things are moving to.
When it did not happen, she need to voice her frustration like any human being before it gets to boiling point.
They both need to talk about our feelings more, and how each of their contributions to their home and relationship make them feel, and how they interpret each other’s contributions.
Just because something is not spoken about, does not mean it is not important.
A relationship or marriage is not a competition, but for many couples it feels like it.
When people feel guilt or stress, it leads them to act funny ways.
Often stress and guilt are barriers to communication.
The key to overcoming them is to recognize what it is and have the courage to talk about it.
Any husband and wife might be able to do it as a couple.
Alternatively, they might want the help of a friend who can listen to the way you are communicating with each other and offer insights and advice.
They got it sorted out, and kissed and hugged.
It will not hurt so much if they did not feel such love for each other at the same time.
But it served as a good reminder to them.
Sometimes couple get so wrapped up in your own emotions that they forget to think of the other person.
They also need to entertain the possibility that they are misinterpreting each other.
Talking about it is the way to expose the miscommunication and let the healing begin.
A good lesson to learn, even for the experts.
Eventually, my friend got her marriage sorted out with the help of an online program by a professional marriage counsellor Amy Waterman.
It is called Save My Marriage Today which has helped save other marriages which you can click below for more details.