student love tip: be open

This is a Student Love Tip by Audrey Dewes

One of the most important tips for success in an intimate relationship is openness and routine talk. Talking and listening to one another is a significant part of any relationship and is a routine that brings couples closer together. Self-disclosing is one way to be open and talk with your mate. Once you are in a relationship, self-disclosing has less formal rules and is more about breaking down walls in your relationship. Being open with your mate shows your willingness to be vulnerable with him/her and your desire to know more about his/her life.

My boyfriend and I have been together for several years and we have been through different stages of self-disclosing. Early in our relationship, I told him about my mom’s struggle with Depression. This information sharing showed that I trusted him with that information and was comfortable enough to open myself up.

Metacommunication is another huge aspect of openness and routine talk. Metacommunication is talking about communication. Discussing effective ways of managing conflicting and communicating each other’s wants/needs helps to avoid problems. Saying something like, “Hunnie, it would be easier for me to talk to you about this problem if you could work on not raising your voice.” Talking about your relationship itself and checking in on how your partner is feeling shows that you have a concern for the relationship. Checking in on how the relationship is progressing shows that you both are concerned with your relationship's health and the future of your partnership. Saying something like, “How are you feeling about us? I’m happy with the way things are going, but what do you think?”

Finally, simple communication like asking about each other’s day is a necessary component of a successful intimate relationship. In a relationship, you should talk about nothing as though it were important. Showing that you care even for the minute, insignificant details of your partner’s life helps to increase intimacy and endearment for one another.

Here's is another great Student Love Tip about openness and routine talk (the author asked to remain anonymous).

Openness and routine talk is the tip that I think is the most important for romantic relationships. This can be like talking about your day or being able to talk about problems with your significant other. I think that one way to improve your openness and routine talk is to just ask your mate about his/her day and listen and respond to him/her about this. I know in my mom and dad’s relationship, my dad always asks her how her day was and if she was really happy or really sad then he would communicate with her about it. This is an example of routine talk.

Openness, on the other hand, takes more skill and time involvement to make it work. You have to be willing to take the time to talk to someone and have to be able to talk about emotions and feelings with someone. If one partner is open and the other isn't, it could create tension. In my own relationship, I have learned to be open with my girlfriend and talk about my feelings about things. I think in choosing a mate you have to figure out if you and your partner can talk this way or not. If you’re already in this relationship you just have to keep working on talking about your feelings together.

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