Assertiveness in the couple relationship


assertiveness in the couple relationshipWhat is the assertiveness?

Assertiveness is the ability to communicate emotionaly and cognitive, clearly, reasoned, without offending the interlocutor, and without suppressing our emotions and opinions. Is the ability to easily express our views and interests, without anxiety and without denying them to the others.

Assertiveness implies self acceptance (including accepting our own mistakes and limitations), self worth, the ability to share our own experiences with others, the awareness and acceptance of personal needs,  respecting  the rights and needs of the others.

To communicate assertively is necessary to have a good relationship with ourselves and an attitude of respect towards others. When we are deeply in love we feel fulfilled and content. We see our own life with more pink colors. We are hopeful. We are both more willing to ourselves and to others. We are more tolerant, more transfigurative and more generous. We accept more easily different views from ours.


Let's keep ourselves into love
Love makes us relate better with others. To share and to receive. Therefore to communicate assertively in a couple relationship is necessary to keep ourselves in love. To love ourselves and to keep alive the love in our couple relationship.

When we communicate with the other one from the heart, we express more freely, calmer and gentler. We share much easier and more clearly what we feel and what we want. We express our needs and desires without claiming from the other one to fulfill them for us.

When we are present in our hearts we are more at peace with ourselves and open to accept the other in our life as it is, forgive him (her) if he (she) did wrong, to encourage and support him/her when he/she needs, to listen and to understand his/her point of view. We listen to his/her needs and desires without feeling obliged to satisfy them.

To do not feel obliged to satisfy other’s desires and needs, does not mean to be indifferent and selfish. It means not to sacrifice ourselves in order to satisfy each other's stupidly at the expense of our physical, mental and emotional balance. To always neglect ourselves in order to satisfy the desires and needs of the other, until we get to feel exhausted, empty and frustrated, it is not a proof of love nor to the another and nor to ourselves.

Assertive communication involves to know how to say NO when necessary.


Let’s learn to communicate assertively
To learn to communicate assertively is nesesar to understand that we are entitled to say:
- I DON’T KNOW. We should not feel guilty if we do not know something. Is better to recognize that we do not know and that we document  if there is something that really interests us. And if there is not an area of interest to us then the more we have nothing to feel ashamed of.
- I DO NOT UNDERSTAND and ask for more informations or explanations.
- I DO NOT WANT IT. We have the right to accept or refuse something. We have the right to accept or reject someone’s request.

At the same time we must accept and respect that others have the right to say, I DON’T KNOW, I DON’T UNDERSTAND and  I DON’T WANT THIS.

Assertive communication is performed on the background of inner freedom and respect for the freedom of others.


Assertiveness in the couple relationshipHow to express criticism
The greatest tensions arise when discontents are expressed. It's a fact: people make mistakes. But how should we handle the situation? Like a disaster that destroys our relationship? Or as a situation from which we both want to learn?

He who made a mistake wants to be forgiven. That who has been done wrong wants the other to change and not repeat the mistake. If both assume the transformation  (to learn to forgive and to correct their mistake) then the situation can be managed constructively.

It is said that the tone makes the music. So choose a warm tone. In addition, if the boyfriend / girlfriend made a mistakes bring that into his/her attention, do not cancel his/her value. For example, if he/she greatly delayed a meeting with you choose to tell him/her calmly:
- "You're late 30 minutes and I’ve waited in cold weather, which was very unpleasant for me. I would have preferred for you to arrive in time or even phone me and tell me that you were late. I would have waited in a place where I wouldn't be cold. "
Instead of saying yelled:
- "You're  selfish. You do not care about me anymore. You never do what you say. You’re never capable to get in time."

When we point the error without canceling the person, chances are much higher for the other one to change. Attitudes that undermine self-esteem makes the transformation more difficult.

How to receive criticism
When we have a low self-esteem, it is very difficult to receive criticism even if is justified and expressed harmoniously. It is the duty of each other to learn to express assertive comments. But it is also our duty to strengthen our self-esteem and lucidity so we can get other’s observations and manage them constructively.


Exercise for couple assertive communication
Communication involves a transmitter and a receiver. It's important to know how to express (words, attitudes, tones, gestures) but also to listen. This exercise implies first to be on the position of that who is expressing and after on the position of the receiver. It is useful for the receiver to write down what the other is expressing.

1. Sit face to face.
2. Determine who will be the first to express. We'll name symbolically that who expresses E and the receiver P.
3. E will share to P the feelings of love he/she feels for P.
4. E will share to P what appreciates most about P.
5. E will share to P some personal needs that he/she has without making P feel obliged to satisfy them. (P alone will decide if it wants and can meet the needs and desires of E)
6. E will share to P one or maximum three mistakes that E believes that P makes them and will let P to think of it for a while (for example 3 days) and then calmly express their views (if it seem objective observations, if and how they wish to correct the mistakes).
7. E will reaffirm the feelings of love for P.
8. Embrace yourselves with love.
9. Reverse the roles.

After passing the time you’ve set for analyzing the observations (those 3 days or as you’ve set), give yourself a meeting to analyze them. Start the meeting with expressing the feelings of love. Preserve yourselves into the heart and take the decisions from there. The wisdom of the heart can offer us brilliant sollutions and can generate profound transformations.


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