Relationship Advice for Communicating Without Talking

For over a year now, we’ve been working with the idea of how to “stop talking on eggshells” and how to start communicating for closer, more loving and connected relationships.

The surprising thing we’ve discovered is that you don’t always have to actually talk to do this.You can communicate in other ways.

Otto’s father has trouble hearing. During a recent visit when Otto’s father was having even more trouble than normal hearing, a friend suggested to Otto that he “write out ” what he needed to say to his father.

Writing out what you need to say isn’t just a good way to communicate with the hearing impaired.

Writing your thoughts can be a wonderful way to begin communicating if one or both of you can’t seem to say what you mean and if the two of you can’t seem to change the way you react to each other.

Here’s what one woman told us…

“Written communication allows us time to read and reread what we have to say before we actually send it. Even when we are physically together, we email and text message one another. It lifts us spiritually and emotionally throughout the day… And, the written word allows us to look back on what we have written when we might tend to overreact to a situation. We ‘see’ the tenderness and vulnerability of that person that we love and have a lot more compassion and empathy for a comment or statement that could easily be taken in a negative or ‘wrong’ way if we didn’t look at the whole

It’s actually healthy to take a break now and then from talking about what’s wrong and focus on what you would like more of in your relationship.

Here’s an example of how writing about their hopes and dreams helped one couple get back on track…

Tom and Charlotte were having trouble communicating and were tired of their continual picking at one another. They both wanted to take a break from their constant
quarreling and decided to look at what they wanted rather than what they didn’t want in their relationship.

They agreed to write what they wanted their relationship to look like and then share their answers with each other. They agreed to give each other a week to think about and respond to their hopes, dreams, desires and requests letter.

When they read each other’s letters, they looked for the overlap–where the two of them could meet each other and agree on a new focus for their relationship and lives.

Writing was a way that each could open to the other that seemed safer than using spoken words. Writing allowed them to shift their focus to what might be possible rather than remaining stuck in the negative and what wasn’t.

If there are issues in your relationship that you just can’t seem to talk about, consider writing your thoughts and feelings. If you are very angry about the situation or issue, you might write two letters–one for yourself in which you rant and rave and then rip it up and the other in which you express what you a feeling without blaming the other

Use “feeling” words (sad, scared, mad, confused, tired, uncomfortable, disappointed, alone) and stay away from accusing the other person or of assuming what he or she is thinking or feeling. You might write your thoughts about the situation with the caveat that you know that they may or may not be true.

Write how you’d like your relationship to be and ask the other person to do the same.

Remember, you don’t always have to talk to communicate. If this idea appeals to you, we invite you to try it this week.

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