Crux of the Matter Live Tweetchat is a Relationship and Lifestyle conversation which holds every Friday on Twitter between the hours of 6pm and 9pm. We are open to discuss every issue as it affects you and I. Do contact Elsie Godwin via email – email@example.com for suggestions, feature or sponsorship.
Chidi Okereke was our guest last Friday. Chidi Okereke is a Writer, Communications professional, Social commentator, Feminist, Jack of many trades, master of some. The conversation was on Communication in Relationships and below is an extensive recap of the conversation on twitter.
What is communication?
In simple terms, communication is the exchange of information. It could be by speaking, writing, or some other medium. As far as parties involved clearly understand each other, communication has occurred.
How important is communication in Relationships?
Communication is the most important feature in a relationship; ABOVE love and finances. You need to communicate to understand who you’re with, and when communication dies, relationship is as well as dead.
What are the major factors that cause communication breakdown in relationships?
There are plenty but off the top of my head, I think ego, unwillingness to admit wrong, lying and using harsh words can break communication down.
What is the most effective way of handling a communication break down?
Put each other first, first. Whether you’re right or wrong, swallow your pain, and remember why you’re with that person in the first place. This is so you can get to that point where you are ready and willing to talk. Then TALK.
Get clear about what happened and where you stand. Apologize for your share of the breakdown. Propose a possible solution and really listen to your partner’s response. These things are not black and white, but if you put each other first, always, you’ll flourish.
Do you think our parents’ generation are any better at communication that this generation?
There’s no clear way to answer this question. Many of our parents were in relationships where one person’s word was law. One said, other submitted, and followed. It had its advantages – arguments were less. But it had more disadvantages. Only one person had almost all the say. The innermost feelings of the other person was suppressed. These days, with more people understanding that nobody is superior by virtue of gender, communication is becoming equal, and better.
What do you personally find most difficult about communication?
The unwillingness of one party to participate meaningfully. Nothing is as stressful as that. Also, when you speak different ‘love’ languages, have different values, etc., communication might not work.
Has the emergence of instant communication technology influenced our communication negatively or positively?
There are two sides to this coin. They say absence makes the heart fonder. They also say out of sight is out of mind. Depending on what side you’re looking at, you might say technology has positively or negatively influenced communication. But I’ll go for positively sha. When bae is not around, it is cool to know they’re one call, text, snap, Whatsapp or Twitter DM away. That way you have some control on how much you keep in touch with each other.
Do you think there are specific people each of us can communicate with or we can all learn to communicate with every individual with effort?
I’ll say both. For some couples, communication is instant, seamless, sweet. Those are the people you hear say ‘we hit it off immediately’. For some others, it takes a lot of commitment to learn how to be with, communicate with and understand them.
What are some issues you think people have troubles in communicating?
This is a personal question sha. For everyone, it’s a different thing. But I think one thing a lot of people do not talk about is sex – and what really satisfies them. I’ll recommend people communicate with their partners and demand sincere responses.
“Do you like it fast?” “Do you like being fingered?” “Am I sucking it well?” Etc. And if you’re not enjoying something don’t moan like you are. Tell him/her, “uncle/aunty, no be so…”
Do you think there is any difference between men and women when it comes to communication in a relationship?
Yes. In my opinion o. A lot of men want to talk less, while a lot of women want to talk more. While I have met women who want to talk less than me, and men who want to talk more, it is more common for women to express themselves with words more.
It’s common to hear the stereotype that men are not very open to communication; why is that the case and what can be done about it?
It is mostly the hard-guy thing. “Men are supposed to live by the ‘action speak louder than words’ code”. Many of us grew up in homes where daddy rarely talked too, so we just followed their footsteps. I also read somewhere that a man’s brain contains less cells that manage emotional and speech functions (scientists should verify please). If it’s true, then ‘our’ unwillingness to communicate is backed by science
Ironically, a lot of men complain that women over communicate. Is there such a thing as over communication?
This is also a perspective thing. While communication is important, understanding is key. Do you understand what your partner likes? Does he/she want to listen to you talk about how every little detail of your day went? Etc.
Understand your partner and communication will be perfect. In conclusion, if two people understand each other, there will be no such thing as over-communication in THEIR relationship.
What tips can you share to improve communication in relationships? Basically, how can a man and woman in love communicate better?
Many ways o. Many ways to improve communications. But these ones come to mind:
1. Stop and listen. Force yourself to hear if you have to
2. Be open and honest with your partner.
3. Pay attention to nonverbal signals. What are those things they’re (not) saying?
4. Stay focused. Don’t be distracted. Let your partner know you’re with them, and you’re listening. 5. Do Not Attack. Don’t use harsh words. When you (mistakenly or not) raise your voice, apologize immediately
5. If your partner gets you angry, there’s something I call the 24-hour rule. It is enough time to simmer down, so your response does not aggravate things. In the end, understanding, love and willingness to make your relationship work is key.