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The Importance of Family Communication

Communication is the way we interact with others and express our feelings, thoughts, needs, and ideas. It involves not only words, but also our gestures, facial expressions, body positions, and perceptions. It is a complex process that requires more than clarity in use of words; it requires consistency between our words and our gestures, facial expressions, body “language” and perceptions. It also requires active listening and careful feedback of what is understood. Complicated as it always is, communication becomes even more complicated when it comes to family communication and relationships.

When couples fail to maintain good communication or there is a general breakdown in family communication, the marriage relationship is in jeopardy. Communication breakdown causes unhappiness and misunderstandings. If these are not dealt with in a positive way, they can precipitate a crisis that can lead to separation or even divorce.

The number one skill that contributes to good family communication is active listening. Active listening is a sign of love and respect when you sincerely seek to understand and empathize. Sincerity is demonstrated when you do not negatively react to what they are saying. It is shown by expressing appreciation for their being open about thoughts, feelings and beliefs. Active listening brings out the best in relationships, promotes a positive home environment and strengthens the family unit. Establishing regular opportunities for all members of the family to actively listen to each other will encourage and develop good family communication. One of the best such regular opportunities to develop good family communication skills is around the “dinner table.”

Good communication is the key to a good marriage. If you are having problems communicating with you spouse or you feel that there is a breakdown in your family communication, don’t be afraid or ashamed to seek professional help. There are experts ready to help you save your marriage.

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