realationship communication

Recent posts

Poly 101 Vs. Poly 201

In the class on non-monogamy that I’m teaching this semester, we’ve spent some time discussing polyamory and open relationships, focusing on how these relationship models intersect with cultural notions of gender and sexuality. We’ve covered a lot of “Poly 101″ topics such as how to communicate in non-monogamous relationships, so I’m going to pass along to my students this link to a blog post about Poly 201 issues. In it, blogger AmazonSyren describes the importance of having a space in which to discuss the issues that arise when one is practicing an alternative sexuality lifestyle. It’s less about “whoa, this is new, what are my options?” and more about “ok, now that we’re here, let’s discuss managing the daily things that crop up in this lifestyle.” Continue Reading →

Review of The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts by Gary Chapman

I’ve heard a fair bit about The 5 Love Languages—usually recommendations and praise—so I decided to check it out for myself. My partner and I took turns reading it to each other on a fairly epic road trip, and we agreed that it was a generally useful and interesting read, though with a few drawbacks. Chapman’s premise, based on his years of experience as a marriage counselor, is that people intuitively gravitate toward one of five ways of expressing and interpreting love and affection. Couples run into problems when they’re speaking different love languages to each other, leading to complaints that “he/she doesn’t really love me.” In actuality, according to Chapman, they just need to learn each other’s love languages in order to start communicating in a way that will be received as loving and caring. Continue Reading →

Book Review: Nonviolent Communication

“Communication is the key to great sex.” If I had a nickel for every time I heard this…well, insert your favorite joke here. But it’s true. We humans are complicated social animals who require linguistic transparency and precision to get the quality of connection with others that we want. However, I find it frustrating how often the value of relationship communication is distilled to a sound bite, without offering any strategies or tools to actually achieve it. Continue Reading →