‘‘I can’t live without you. You complete me.’’
This statement can low self-esteem and confidence. It imply’s that somehow you weren’t totally content or satisfied before you met your partner, and are incapable of being happy with out them. It creates an imbalance in the relationship because it elevates your partner to a higher status than you. Both partners should be equal in a healthy relationship.
Instead you can say: "We are so great together. I really appreciate you.”
‘‘I wish things were how they used to be.’’
When you're going through a rough patch in a relationship, it's hard not to reminisce about how amazing things were when you first met. As a relationship matures, things inevitably will change, but there are great aspects of every stage of a romantic relationship. It’s impossible to recreate the past, so saying a statement like this is never helpful to a situation. Yearning for something in the past devalues the positive aspects of the present and can restrict the future growth of your relationship.
Instead you can say: “We have such an amazing history and I’d love to work together to make sure we have a future that’s just as amazing. What changes do you think we need to make to ensure that?”
‘‘If you really cared about me you’d do it.’’
This statement is emotional blackmail. Whether intentional or unintentional, by saying this you’re manipulating and pressuring your partner into doing what you think is right because you either want to get your way, or you believe you know best. Saying this will create animosity in your relationship which will lead your partner to anger and frustration.
Instead you can say: "I’d really like to understand why you don’t want to do this. Can you explain to me how you’re feeling about it?”
This type of judgmental statement will never help develop or nurture a relationship. Couples need to be changing with each other. Healthy relationships that flourish allow for dynamic growth and transformation. It’s something that should be embraced together as a couple.
Instead you can say: "We’ve both changed so much since we first started dating, what do you think has changed the most? Are there any changes you’d like to see happen?”
‘‘Why do you NEVER listen to me?’’
It can sometimes feel like your partner never listens to what you’re saying, but this is one of the least helpful things to say in an argument. Typically when one partner says this, certain aspects of the relationship are probably being taken for granted.
Instead you can say: "Why do you think you're right on this? I want to fully understand your reasons."
‘‘My ex would never do that!’’
Comparing your current relationship with your last one is never a good idea. It can make your partner feel angry, worthless, and insecure. If you don’t believe your partner is treating you the right way, try addressing it in a different way.
Instead you can say: "Could you please explain to me why you did that?" or "Why are you acting this way?"
Relationships can be tough. One of the best ways to improve your circumstances is to change the way you’re communicating with your partner. Working with a licensed talk therapist can be a great way to help you make adjustments in the way you communicate. Get started today!