Emotional compatibility is a common cause for arguments between married couples. Everyone brings different perspectives and experiences to the table when they are involved in a relationship, so it would be unwise to expect that partners match up exactly. However, it is important to learn how to respect your partner’s different emotional needs. Learning this skill during the process of marriage counseling can help your relationship with your partner grow stronger.
Often, both partners have different levels of emotional needs. Sometimes one partner craves deeper levels of expression and communication than the other partner. One partner may seek out long, drawn-out conversations about how they feel. They may want their partner to do the same. For the other partner, a person who doesn’t crave so much depth of feeling, this situation can be overwhelming and frustrating. These different expectations can cause difficulties.
Relationship Advice experts have also found that many couples have different ways of reacting to the world emotionally. On one hand, one partner may experience strong emotions to everyday events. They may cry at movies, laugh loud and long at dinner, or be quick to anger when the children are naughty. On the other hand, the other partner may be more emotionally steady. They may take more time to react to situations and spend more time thinking things through before showing an emotional reaction.
Every relationship has obstacles, but smart couples seek out resources to overcome those obstacles. When arguments arise between partners who have different emotional needs, marriage counseling can help guide the couple back to meeting each other’s needs in a loving way.
A Relationship Advice expert can help each individual identify their most important emotional needs and learn how to reach out to their partner in a positive, loving manner. Some of the areas of emotional needs that couple should examine are: affection, sexual fulfillment, and conversation. Each partner will usually be encouraged to write down their list of emotional needs under each category so that they will remember details when communicating them later.
Often it is at this point that men and women are surprised to see that the needs they have listed are so different from each other. Psychological research shows that men and women do in fact look for different types of support and care from their partners. On one hand, men can overlook their female partner’s need for more affection and verbal affirmation. One the other hand, women sometimes do not recognize that their male partner requires more physical attention than they do.
Once each individual’s needs are out in the open, a professional Relationship Advice provider will usually meet with the couple together. The marriage counseling process then can approach the couple’s communication with each other so that each partner is able to fairly and openly express their needs. Many couples will want to refer to their journal or notes that they wrote during their individual session with the counselor. With professional guidance, the couple will learn the good communication skills necessary for negotiating a plan to meet their individual emotional needs. Developing emotional compatibility is therefore fundamental for a strong and lasting marital relationship.
Dr. Joseph Abraham, Director, Center for Human Growth and Business Insights, Mechanicsburg, PA. Tel 717-943.0959 Online Psychologist and Life Coach: Marriage Counseling, Relationship Advice and Management Consulting. Online Counseling and Small Business Advice
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