Communication is crucial. And not just standard, bare minimum communication... open, honest communication. We know this and yet how often do we see couples struggle or, worse, fall apart because they couldn't seem to do it? Being honest and brave enough to talk about the things that matter is the only way for your relationship to grow and continue down the exciting adventure path it was meant to.
If it stings a little or makes you feel a bit more vulnerable than you're used to, congrats, you're doing it right. Relationships aren't meant to be easy, they're meant to help you learn and grow alongside the person you're with. It's that vulnerability and your willingness to open up to someone that makes relationships so special. It's saying hey, I care about you and what we have and it's important to me that you understand what I'm thinking and feeling so we can avoid unnecessary conflict.
Picture this. You just had a nasty fight with your significant other. You're frustrated, angry, and hurt. Naturally, the first person you turn to for comfort or to release that rage is your best friend. As enticing as it may be to quickly rant to a close friend about your relational struggles, what good does it really do? Sure, it might help you calm down, but think of it this way: When you're angry, you definitely aren't in the mindset to think too clearly and may easily describe the situation inaccurately. The person you're ranting to would get the wrong idea and then give you advice that does more harm than good. It's like a doctor prescribing the wrong drug because the patient didn't describe their symptoms correctly. And let's face it, when we rant to our close friends about how our significant others did us wrong, the typical reaction is to rally an exorbitant amount of negative energy against that person. I think we can all agree this has never truly helped anyone. Also, your best friend might know you well but, chances are, they probably don't know your significant other well enough to give you clear advice. Often times the advice we receive in these situations can even confuse us more.
I am a firm believer that in these instances, taking time to cool off and directly address your significant other about your issue is your best bet. Who else would know better about how to handle the problem? Your relationship is between you and your significant other. I've found that while it may help for short term relief, bringing other people into your relationship only makes things worse. Your friends may be loyal and understanding, but it also isn't too fair to them to be constantly dragged into your personal relationship. Constantly exposing your relationship problems harms your relationships with your significant other and your friends. Nobody wants that.
I've experienced all kinds of friendships and relationships with people who were great at communication and people who struggled with it. The difference good communication makes is astounding. I am currently blessed to be in a relationship in which my significant other and I are comfortable to be completely honest with each other as much as we can and can discuss everything from Area 51 memes to our deepest thoughts and insecurities. No one forced us to share these things with each other nor were we able to do this right off the bat. It took a lot of time to trust each other and to stop being so scared of getting hurt just enough to let the other person in. We don't actively seek others opinions and advice because we agreed that it's best for us to just talk to each other. It has by no means been sunshine and rainbows the whole way through but at the end of it all we've come out stronger and more understanding of each other than ever.
I'm not here to shoot anyone down for seeking relationship advice from others or to tell you your relationship is bad because you have trouble properly communicating. I simply aim to help you see things from a different perspective. At the end of the day, it all comes down to what you and your significant other are comfortable with. Sometimes, it really may be best for you to seek advice from others and that's perfectly okay. What's important is that you have these conversations to mediate what your "normal" is because, trust me, good communication makes all the difference.