Date Day ❣️.Me …
Our Date Day today had a lot of reminiscing moments. We talked about our first year of marriage and how plagued it was.
Yes it was so plagued. Looking at how far we have grown, we can only testify that indeed there’s a God in heaven who holds the cords of marriage.
We talked about how infested we were with the SELF that communication took a nose dive.
We could argue about anything and everything.
We could argue from the house, or in the car to our destination. Sometimes we would just reverse back home since well, our moods were now off the radar.
Johnny would say something and I could take offense at an instance. I always told him that “he doesn’t get me.”
I would say something and he would always say, “am lecturing him”,”hammering words in him.”
Ofcourse those words would turn us from the main argument into another thing.
We could even forget what the issue was and start arguing about how, “insensitive, disrespectful and selfish” he was, or how “nagging, disrespectful, and rude” I was.
Well, it took sometime, and deliberate effort to accept that we each had a listening problem. We were good at talking, still are, but our listening was off.
We began practicing what we call empathetic listening.
See, EMPATHY means to enter into another person’s world, toseek to walk in HIS or HER shoes and see the world from his or her perspective.
It really doesn’t matter who did what because, at that heated moment, everyone gets his or her RIGHT CARD flagged.
An EMPATHETIC HUSBAND seeks to understand what his wife is experiencing-her thoughts, feelings, her inner cries and desires.
And the same is true of an EMPATHETIC WIFE toward her husband. She seeks to understand his dreams, his hopes, his turns, his fears.
Empathetic listening encourages other people to talk, because they know they will be heard.
Unfortunately, by nature we tend to be judgmental listeners. We evaluate whatthe other person says based on our own view of the situation, and we respond by pronouncing our judgment.
That’s why you will find a husband saying that his wife is “nagging” , yet she only needs an EMPATHETIC HUSBAND.
Probably you don’t express your love for her as she perceives_her love language, probably you don’t take interest in what she dreams to do, probably you openly shut her down, probably you don’t protect her, probably you are more about self gratification when it comes to your intimacy.
Nagging is a character of a quarrelsome wife, even if she has an empathetic husband. It’s ungodly.
But if your wife expresses her desire to be truly heard, truly listened to, do not label her nagging. It’s in your best interest of your marriage to ask the Lord to teach you His Character of empathy.Seek to listen to her, empathetic listening.
If your husband says that you don’t listen to him. Seek to find out “why”.
Probably you don’t ask him about his day, probably it’s all about you when he gets home, probably you don’t take interest in what interests him, probably you don’t put any effort in trying to adjust into what he suggests, probably you step on his ego without regard, probably you praise other men or compare him to them.
Judgmental listening tends to stop the flow of communication and we wonder why doesn’t she or he talk nowadays?
By failing at the art of empathetic listening, we sabotage intimacy, the very thing we so desperately want in our marriages.
Do you know what helped us? We changed our attitude towards each other. We both wanted the same thing, intimacy. So we were not enemies. We just had to get rid of the “me” stance.
The thing is, see that conversation from your spouse’s perspective. Yes you do have yours and it’s great, the ‘correct side’, but the Lord calls us to live in understanding with each other.
That will mean, dropping all the hard stances you have, opinions, glorified or not, and see the world from the point of your spouse. Try understand why they feel so.
With that, even if you might never fully comprehend your wife’s or husband’s side, they will at least feel understood, not just heard. On your side, you will have began practicing a courageous virtue of empathy.
Attempted virtue does bring light.
With time, you will be talking about issues without putting on your boxing gloves.