Technique for Communicating

by Dr. Karen Ruskin on June 12, 2010

In Dr. Karen’s Marriage Manual – soon to be released, —UPDATED: NOW AVAILABLE- I offer techniques/strategies for marital success. Provided below is one example of a communication technique you can start using today. This technique is called The Blank-ity Blank Technique. It helps your spouse to understand how you feel and offers you a method to communicate calmly. Communicate with your spouse by using the following script and fill in the blanks with your particular situation;

“When you _____ it makes me feel _____. When I feel ____ it triggers me to _____. But instead, I will _____.”

This final blank you say something along the lines of; “discuss with you how I am feeling, tell you that I love you and that I am invested in and want to work as a team to enhance our marriage”.

Case example for clarity;
When you stay out with your friends very late several nights out of the week instead of coming home to me after work, it makes me feel sad and angry and unloved, like you do not want to spend time with me and that you have fallen out of love with me. When I feel sad, angry, and unloved it triggers me to distance myself from you and act like I do not care about you by decreasing my communication and sexual interaction with you. But instead I will tell you that I miss you and miss the relationship we can have, I love you and I want to spend more time with you and I am invested to work on improving our relationship as a team. ”

Consider an example in your own life when you are struggling to communicate effectively with your spouse, consider a time in your life when you are feeling angry, sad, disappointed, etc., and choose to utilize this method. Notice how it impacts the marital interaction.

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