Want to Stay Close? Start Sharing

In relationships, one of the bad habits couples can get into is to stop sharing with each other. Whether it's due to being "too busy" or because people start to feel like their partner doesn't get them, people in relationships just start to pull back, to withdraw and not say what's on their mind. As a consequence, distance and resentment start to build.

Whether it's sharing about the irritations of your day or a dream you have, it's absolutely critical to share these thoughts and feelings with your partner - even if it's hard or you feel misunderstood. If you keep trying to share (in constructive, positive ways) and your partner repeatedly dismisses, minimizes or outright turns against you, seek help.

Here are some ways to share:

1. 20 minutes a day (10 minutes each) after work sharing about your day. This is the classic debriefing and answer to "How was our day, dear?"

2. Playing the "high/low" game where you each share a highlight and a low moment of the day (see example of this from the movie "Story of Us")

3. One of you pretends to be a very attentive friend or a perfectly loving parent and listens to your partner fully and completely: -- saying things like, "tell me more" and "do you have anything else to say about that?" You offer no advice, solution or really any comment on what they have to say. Take turns doing this on occasion for each other.

4. Send short emails or texts throughout the day with thoughts about your project, your day or what you want to work on.

5. Practice saying things like, "One thing I felt when you just did that or said that was...." Do this without attacking or being dramatic. Just share.

How do you share with your partner?

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