What Your Spouse Wants You To Know
By: Kathy
January 13, 2013

What does your spouse really want you to know?  Here are two key things that everyone who is in a committed relationship needs to know. . .

“I want to know there is someone that knows and understands me.”  That is what we all found in our partner in the beginning, right?  We felt a sense of being ‘at home’ with them, they ‘got’ us, they could feel our pains, celebrate our joys with true passion, and empathize with our challenges in life.  Somewhere along the path, in a relationship, the lines get blurred and it becomes hard to separate out what is about us and what is about them, so our ability to provide that sense of being ‘at home’ to our spouse is lost.  When their pains involve us, it is extremely difficult to empathize at a level our spouse needs because we are, at the same time, battling with our own self-worth.  If I empathize with my spouse, I have to face that I am not all good; if I defend myself (i.e., prove that I am good), then I am not empathizing with my spouse.  Human nature trends towards defending oneself and a stalemate usually ensues.  “I’m not going to understand you until you understand me!” You are not getting your needs met (to be understood why you did what you did) and your spouse is not getting their needs met (to be understood that they hurt).

If one of your spouse’s number one needs is to be known and understood, then you are going to have to overcome your need to defend yourself and understand your spouse’s pain from their perspective.  This skill ranks pretty high on the  difficulty scale.  It also ranks very high on the scale of what it takes to be successful in marriage.

“I need to know that my spouse has my best interest in mind.”  One of the special bonds of a life-long partnership is knowing, at all times, that there is one person out there who knows and understands us intimately, and that they are on our side!  It is tough enough to go through this world facing all of it’s challenges.  It is hard to know who to trust and who to be careful around. We don’t want to have to worry about that with our spouse!  So if your interactions with your spouse lean towards self-centered, self-protective, self-fulfilling, etc. (as we all tend to do from time to time) you are going to have a hard time convincing your spouse that you have their best interest in mind!  When we sense that our partner is not on our side, we begin to feel alone and anxious.  This very defeated feeling leads to a lot of marital discord.  The only way to re-discover what is best for your spouse, is to take your own personal interests out of the equation.

Knowing and understanding someone and showing them that you have their best interest in your heart are two of the best ways to love another person.  When two people are able to do this for one another, then a foundation is laid on which great things can be built!