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Dear Misunderstood, There Is a Way to Communicate with Your Significant Other This Valentine's Day

Jennifer Waddle

iBelieve Contributor
Published Feb 04, 2024
Dear Misunderstood, There Is a Way to Communicate with Your Significant Other This Valentine's Day

Imagine what could happen if you and your sweetheart prayed together, seeking God first in your relationship.

Dear Misunderstood,

Being misunderstood is terribly frustrating, isn’t it? You try to get your point across, but for some reason, your significant other doesn’t seem to understand. And the more misunderstood you feel, the less likely you are to communicate effectively. This ongoing cycle can make you feel like you’re stuck on a hamster wheel going nowhere.

This Valentine’s Day, I encourage you to step off the hamster wheel and communicate differently. Give your significant other the opportunity to hear what you have to say in a calm, clear way. (Oh, and learn how to be a good listener yourself!)

I promise you that there is a better way to communicate this Valentine’s Day. Whether you’re dating, engaged, or married, I know you’ll find these encouragements to be a big help in taking your relationship to the next level of understanding:

Slow Down and Take a Deep Breath

I know how challenging it can be to express your true thoughts and feelings. The busyness of life, the demands of work, and the pressures of this world can leave you feeling disconnected and further apart than ever. But this Valentine’s Day, slow down and take a deep breath. God’s got this. He’s got you.

Healthy communication starts with a calm, peaceful mindset. It has the best of intentions and keeps things in the right perspective. It can even be helpful to practice a few breathing techniques before you talk with your significant other. This will help you let go of any stress and tension you’re carrying. Here’s a simple exercise to try:

Inhale for four seconds through your nose and exhale for eight seconds through your mouth. If it’s helpful, envision yourself blowing out a tiny candle, making your exhale twice as long as your inhale. As you do this, allow a favorite Bible verse to cycle through your mind such as “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end” (Lamentations 3:22-23).

Preparing yourself in this way can make a world of difference in the way you communicate with your significant other. It calms your busy mind, focuses your thoughts on the Lord, and provides a peaceful atmosphere for healthy communication. So slow down, take a few deep breaths, and set the foundation for a calm, cool, and collected conversation this Valentine’s Day.

Be Patient and Kind

Dear Misunderstood, please remember that love is patient and kind. It does not demand its own way, but instead, it seeks to understand and uplift. As you communicate with your significant other, approach him with gentleness and patience, free from judgment or criticism. Try your best to create an atmosphere where honest opinions can be expressed and vulnerabilities can be shared without fear of ridicule or rejection.

Often, when feeling misunderstood, there’s a strong sense of impatience and irritation. Try to recognize these feelings sooner rather than later so that you can respond kindly instead of reacting harshly. As you’ve probably heard before - it’s not always what you say but how you say it.

What you have to say is important, and I want nothing more than for you to be heard and understood. But without a healthy dose of patience, frustration can easily take over. Pray for an extra measure of patience and kindness as you communicate with your significant other this Valentine’s Day. Remember, God is on your side and will help bring the unity and understanding you desire.

Listen Well

When was the last time you listened - really listened? If you want to be heard, it’s important for your significant other to be heard as well. If he senses that you are constantly distracted and not interested in what he has to say, chances are, he’ll tune you out in return. Being a good listener includes:

-Putting your phone on silent mode

-Listening intently without interruption

-Seeking to comprehend his words, thoughts, and emotions with empathy

-Asking thoughtful questions related to what he’s sharing

This Valentine’s Day, let your significant other know he has your undivided attention. Perhaps, leave your phone at home or in the other room and focus solely on him. Imagine how this can improve your communication and help your relationship thrive!

Speak Truthfully but Lovingly

You’ve likely heard the phrase, "Speak the truth in love." This is not only biblical, but it’s essential for strong communication in your dating or marriage relationship. If you’re in the habit of beating around the bush or expecting your significant other to read your mind, this is terribly unfair to them and only causes more tension between you.

No matter how difficult it is, I encourage you to speak the truth in love every single time. Let your “yes” be “yes,” and your “no” be “no.” The more you do this, with a spirit of love and respect, the stronger your relationship will be.

Dear Misunderstood, don’t be afraid to share your hopes and dreams, as well as your fears and disappointments. Speak honestly but gently, assuring your significant other that you love them enough to tell them the truth. 

This way, even when you say hard things, they will know you are speaking from a place of love. Remember that words can heal and encourage, but they can also wound and discourage. Choose your words wisely, my friend, and wrap them in layers and layers of love. By doing this, there’s a much better chance your significant other will receive your message with understanding and grace.

Have Fun

Communication doesn’t always have to be serious. This Valentine’s Day, resist talking about boring, everyday issues, and instead, turn the conversation to fun, lighthearted topics. If it’s helpful, consider writing out (or printing) a few conversation starters. These might include fun prompts such as:

-What is your idea of a romantic getaway?

-If you could go on any adventure, what would it be?

-What would you do with a million dollars?

-What is the most romantic thing I could ever do for you?

Dear Misunderstood, I realize there are pressing issues you’d like to discuss with your significant other, and there will be plenty of time for that in the near future. But on Valentine’s Day, let go of the serious stuff for a few hours and focus on having fun. Let laughter be the best medicine to cure any misunderstandings between you.

Pray Together

Last, but not least, I encourage you to pray together. Seek God's guidance, counsel, and wisdom as you communicate with your significant other. Ask the Lord to soften both of your hearts, to grant you patience, and to fill your words with His love and grace. 

Remember Jesus’ words from Matthew 6:33 when He said, “Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” In this passage, Jesus was encouraging His followers to stop worrying about their daily needs, and instead, focus on heavenly things. Imagine what could happen if you and your sweetheart prayed together, seeking God first in your relationship.

Dear Misunderstood, you can overcome your communication challenges and deepen your relationship with your significant other. Make Valentine’s Day the day you step off the hamster wheel that is going nowhere. Be intentional about slowing down, being kind, speaking the truth in love, and having fun. Bathe your conversation in prayer and watch what the Lord can do!

P.S. - Here are a few more helpful posts to help you communicate this Valentine’s Day:

Dear Couples, is This a Vengeful Argument or Healthy Discussion?

5 Intentional Questions to Regularly Ask Your Spouse

How to Fall Back in Love with Your Spouse

Increasing Intimacy: Strengthening Emotional Bonds in Marriage

Photo Credit: ©Getty Images/fizkes

Jennifer WaddleJennifer Waddle is the author of several books, including Prayer WORRIER: Turning Every Worry into Powerful Prayerand is a regular contributor for LifeWay, Crosswalk, Abide, and Christians Care International. Jennifer’s online ministry is EncouragementMama.com where you can find her books and sign up for her weekly post, Discouragement Doesnt Win. She resides with her family near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains—her favorite place on earth.