In a recent study by The Huffington Post, it was concluded that good communication is the product of a healthy relationship, rather than being the source. It’s kind of like the “chicken or egg” phenomenon, but in this case, good communication is the product of a solid relationship.
A study from the University of Georgia looked at the connection between communication and the degree of satisfaction that couples report. It reported that good communication could not account for how satisfied each couple was.
The researchers were able to recognize that other factors must be influencing couples’ satisfaction.
The roots for positive relationships are based on several factors, such as how the couple engages emotionally, physically and spiritually, according to The Huffington Post.
Plattsburgh state students senior business administration and entrepreneurship major Danny Colflesh and junior entrepreneurship major Julissa Vera have been dating for nine months.
Vera said when she first met Colflesh, she never felt the need to hide any aspect of her life. Colflesh also said he liked that she was so open and honest when they first met.
“The first day I met him, he already knew random things about me, like that I loved dogs and wanted to go to Barcelona. From there, I just gave him my number,” she said. “We’ve always been like that.”
What Vera is describing is one of the positive factors attributed to healthy relationships called “Radical Transparency.” According to an article in Psychology Today, many new budding couples tend to conceal their problems to avoid conflict. However, bottling up feelings tends to create a sense of distrust and can cause tension between couples. Instead, the article suggests couples share their realities with each other to create better positive energy in the relationship.
Chair of the counselor in education department and coordinator of student affairs and higher education program Julia Davis said that she thinks honest communication is something that can make or break a relationship.
“Honest communication can sometimes be painful, but as long as it’s coming from a place of trust, respect and love, and not from somewhere hurtful, then it’s good,” she said.
She said without good communication, partners would cease to even be partners in the first place.
“So the quality of the relationship and the quality of the communication are linked together,” Davis said. “If a partner stops communicating, then that’s the beginning of the end.”
The Wall Street Journal reported people who give the silent treatment while fighting are more likely to be less intimate, poor communicators and not satisfied in their current relationships.
Davis said that the silent treatment is something she considers passive aggressive in her field. She said it’s all too popular in our culture today and she believes it is an unhealthy coping mechanism. That being said, Davis also said there are times when silence is appropriate.
“When there is a heated moment or argument, you don’t want to communicate in that heated anger,” she said. “Often what you say is hurtful and not helpful. So I would say there’s nothing wrong for asking for time to process.”
Another factor the Huffington Post article suggested was the compatibility of the couple. The article stated solid relationships have less to do with constantly having to work on the relationship and more to do with the couple being on the same “wavelength” in terms of communicating. In other words, the more positive the relationship is, the better the communication will be.
For couples that aren’t on the page, Davis said that it’s a part of life. She said it’s those types of moments that truly test a relationship.
“We all grow and develop as human beings, and we don’t necessarily do that at the same speed and in the same direction,” she said.
Vera said when it comes to her relationship, Colflesh and her have different interests, but they both share the same values, which is why their relationship works. Vera even said that when it comes to compatibility, she thinks some people can balance each other out.
“There are some people that are total opposites, but they balance each other out so well. It depends on how powerful their personalities are,” Vera said. “Put two people who are crazy shy together. They’re never going to open up to each other.”
Vera also said for single people, that might be what’s stopping them from meeting significant others as well. She said that if students hide who they are, they’re not going to meet someone compatible. Vera said people might not know who the right person is, but they shouldn’t be afraid of commitment.
“Don’t settle for someone who doesn’t make you happy. If you’re laughing and smiling, then you should stay together,” Vera said. “If they don’t make you happy, don’t just stay with them for the sake of being together.
Email Kavita Singh at firstname.lastname@example.org