Getting your spouse to finally hear your complaints – part 3

Preparing for an effective complaint.

Something is bothering you and you want an adjustment. It is worthwhile to think through how you will present it so that you will more likely be heard and there will be some change.

  1. Determine that this is worth bringing up. Is this something that has a possibility of being changed? Also think: If I say this, what will it do for our relationship?
  2. What do you want to achieve? Take a moment to figure out what will make you feel satisfied or better. This will help you express what you actually want more clearly—and make it more likely that you’ll get it.
  3. Plan your words. Think about how your spouse will best receive your words. Choose the accurate words to describe your feelings and the change you want.
  4. What is the best venue/ method? You know your situation best. What is the best setting? While in-person conversation is generally best, in this particular case, maybe a letter or a voicenote is better so each can collect your thoughts and re-read and edit what you write.
  5. When is the best timing? Be aware of your own and your spouse’s mood and tendencies. You might also ask them when would be a good time to bring something up.
  6. Have this conversation only when you are calm. Your whole demeanor will play into the effectiveness of the conversation – your tone and body language matter. If you are asking for a change from someone, it is best to bring it up when you are least likely to scream, yell, or say regrettable words.

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