“For once in my life I don’t want to lead. I want to be led, and I want my boyfriend to lead the relationship.”
That statement was all I had wanted to say, and should have said, in a previous relationship where I was disappointed in love. Now in a new relationship, I had just laid it out in unmistakably plain words.
Sitting in my boyfriend’s car, barely two weeks into the relationship, I surprised myself—and my boyfriend—with my bluntness. I remember feeling strangely free after I said it, like a great weight had just been taken off my chest.
Eleven months later, I’m still dating the most wonderful man I have ever met. This same man recently expressed his deep appreciation for my blunt vocalization of needs, expectations, and feelings in both good times and bad. This relationship has been a crash course in clear communication. Here are three lessons I have learned from practicing clear communication with my boyfriend.
1. Be willing to be vulnerable with someone who has earned your trust. Communicating clearly means I share the best and the worst with my boyfriend. And by sharing with him, he shares with me. It’s often not the most comfortable of situations, (like the conversation above) but sharing has helped me open up to my boyfriend so that he can get to know who I am and the person I want to be.
2. Don’t worry about sharing your worries. I am naturally someone who agonizes over my mistakes. But when I clearly articulate my worries to my boyfriend, he is able to put the situation in a new light and help me understand that maybe, just maybe, I am overreacting just a little!
3. Remember that sharing your thoughts and feelings are a powerful love language. Holding hands and kissing are great ways to share how you feel. But, as I discussed in this story, words are one of love’s most powerful expressions that enable us to share ourselves with others.
I know I have a long way to go in perfecting clear communication (Especially so every night doesn’t sound like this). But I know now that I can be confident in telling him straight up what’s running through my mind.
Tell your guy what you are thinking and feeling. He wants to know who you are. He wants to know what you want and what you need. I’m glad I’ve found the confidence to share my thoughts and needs with my boyfriend. And that he does the same with me.