How To Talk To Your Boyfriend To Improve Your Relationship
By: Stephanie Kirby
Updated September 02, 2021
Medically Reviewed By: Denise Doster
You’ve probably heard that communication is one of the keys to a happy relationship, but that’s often easier said than done. At times, communication in a relationship can be downright hard. Two people with different personalities can struggle to communicate in an effective and healthy manner. However, if you want your relationship to last, it’s important to work on learning to talk to your boyfriend or when it comes to having a conversation with your boyfriend, to improve your relationship.
What is Communication?
Communication is simply the act of sending or receiving information, but in a relationship we have to navigate the best methods to get that information across. It’s not just any type of communication that makes a couple strong; it’s entirely possible to communicate often and still not be satisfied within your relationship. In this area it is not just frequency of communication, but several other factors, such as active listening, bridging gaps in communication quickly, and understanding how best to relay your feelings to your partner. Effective, healthy communication is key. If you are having trouble making conversation with your boyfriend, you may want to have your boyfriend step in and help you with this.
Dating tips for improving your communication or specifically conversation with your boyfriend include:
- Be honest
- Listen actively without worrying about your turn
- Pay attention to nonverbal communication
- Don’t assume your partner agrees with you
As you continue reading there will be more details about what each of these tips really looks like and how to make them work.
The Importance of Improving Your Communication
Studies have found that having positive and good communication can be an indicator of the happiness of a couple. If you communicate well with your boyfriend, and you can have a meaningful conversation with your boyfriend, then this is good news. But, many couples struggle in this area. And, according to one poll of mental health professionals, poor communication is a leading cause of couples splitting up. If you are having to do all the work when it comes to communicating, tell your boyfriend step up and try to communicate back.
It is a common misconception that you have to have similar communication style as your partner in order for your relationship to succeed. While it may be more challenging to learn a new way of communication, it certainly doesn’t preclude you from being able to work on issues with your boyfriend. If this is the case in your relationship, both you and your boyfriend have to be able to accommodate each other by understanding that their style might be different, but it isn’t wrong. In other words, you can have a conversation with your boyfriend without thinking everything he says is interesting. Furthermore, the way you give love might not be the way you want to receive love. If you don’t think you and your boyfriend have good communication skills right now, don’t worry. Your relationship isn’t doomed. It’s been found that couples can improve the happiness of their relationship by learning better communication skills. Keep trying to have a conversation with your boyfriend, and it will likely keep getting easier. As your relationship grows, a boyfriend steps up and shares the work, in many cases.
How to Talk to Your Boyfriend About Anything
It’s important to keep in mind that your boyfriend’s communication style, as well as yours, was developed before meeting each other. This means that you don’t have to get too upset when you are having a conversation with your boyfriend and it doesn’t go the way you thought it would. We learn how to communicate based on our upbringing and what is modeled for us, as well as through our own personal experiences. If you two are not on the same page, it doesn’t necessarily mean that one communication style is better than the other. Having this difference can make you feel like it’s not safe to open up to your boyfriend, but keeping the lines of communication open at all times can help ensure that you won’t be walking around with built-up emotions and frustrations that don’t get resolved. So, what does good communication entail? While everyone is different, some basic rules apply to have healthy communication in almost every romantic relationship. Keep these in mind when you are having a conversation with your boyfriend.
- Be Honest. The number one dating tip for ways to improve communication within your relationship is to be honest with your boyfriend. Your partner is the person you should be able to be completely open with, and while it might not always be easy to be vulnerable and straightforward with your boyfriend, it is the only way to know ensure your relationship is one you can feel secure in. Do your best to keep from lying in any conversation with your boyfriend. If this can cause a boyfriend step up and do the same, this is a good thing!
You should feel like you can share whatever is on your mind with your partner or in a conversation with your boyfriend, especially if it involves a way to improve the relationship. If you are not honest with your partner, you’re not allowing yourself the chance to know if your boyfriend is someone that you can trust and maintain a long-term relationship with. You also don’t allow your boyfriend the chance to make any changes or decide whether he feels like he can handle whatever you’ve been keeping inside. Consider taking a new boyfriend step, and allowing them to make decisions as well.
Keep in mind, too, that most arguments turn out much worse if one partner is withholding information. While it’s not necessary to share every single detail of your life with your partner, you also don’t want to wait too long to talk about things that could be important. You’ll find that having a small conflict upfront about a disagreement is much easier to resolve -and easier on your relationship- than waiting for the conflict to grow, either through a lie or an omission. It is important to be truthful in a conversation with your boyfriend, especially if you expect the same.
This does not mean, however, that you should state your opinions bluntly. Being honest is not the same as being rude or harsh. While you can’t control someone’s reaction to what you share, you can be mindful of how you would like someone to speak to you if you were in the same situation. Remember, you’re talking to someone you care about when you are sharing conversation with your boyfriend, so be kind in your word choice and delivery. Remember to approach having a boyfriend step by step and work yourself into it. This applies to conversation with your boyfriend all of the time.
- Listen Without Worrying about Your Turn. Good communication is not just about the things you say; it’s also about being an active listener. You should sincerely listen when your boyfriend is talking to you. Be present and focus on the words that he is sharing with you. He could be communicating something very important or something that was difficult for him to muster up the courage to share. Rather than thinking about what you are going to say next, focus on his part of the conversation with your boyfriend and think about what he’s saying to you. Furthermore, after he is done sharing, ask questions if you need clarity before answering or stating your opinion. You miss a lot of the conversation if you are preparing for a response before he’s had the chance to say everything. As you spend more time with your boyfriend step after step can be accomplished in regards to communicating with each other properly and having conversation with your boyfriend that you enjoy.
- Pay Attention to Non-Verbal Communication. People communicate in ways other than words; in fact, a large part of communication is non-verbal. A lot can be learned by paying attention to people’s eyes, posture, and gestures. If your boyfriend is struggling to say something to you or you feel like you’re misunderstanding him, look at his body language. It may help you decipher the message. Also, you can pay attention to your boyfriend’s body language when you are talking to him. This will help you to recognize how he’s receiving your messages. For example, if he is shifting around and not making eye contact, that might be a sign that he’s uncomfortable with the topic at hand. It can take some time to learn these nuances, but if you pay attention, you might be able to pick up on what your boyfriend might not be communicating verbally. Watching your boyfriend step around or fidget can tell you a lot, just as much as a conversation with your boyfriend, in some cases.
Non-verbal communication is not only a person’s expressions; it is also their actions. When you are talking to your boyfriend or having a conversation with your boyfriend, whether it is about a serious matter or not, your attention should be on him. Don’t check your phone or start an involved activity while the two of you are talking. Give him all of your attention. Whatever other tasks you have to do can wait. Be prepared to watch your boyfriend step up and tell you what he needs to tell you. Give him your full attention.
- Don’t Assume Your Partner Agrees with You. When you’ve known someone for a long time, you start to feel like you can read their mind. This can become dangerous, as it can lead you to making assumptions that aren’t necessarily accurate. If you think that you know how the other person will feel, you often don’t feel the need to communicate with them, and you choose to make decisions based on what you think would be best or what you think they would choose. This can make people feel unheard and create more problems in the relationship. If a decision is important, you need to have a conversation with your boyfriend about it.
It’s also easy to start an argument because of a misunderstanding caused by false assumptions. Your boyfriend may be one of the closest people to you, but you are still two separate people. There will be times when the two of you disagree on a matter. So, if you don’t want unnecessary arguments to arise, remember not to start a conversation with the assumption that your partner agrees with you on the issue at hand. Instead, ask what his opinion is on the matter before you make an inflammatory comment. It is worth it to have a conversation with your boyfriend, to keep arguments from harming a relationship. This is a big boyfriend step for the both of you to conquer together.
- Communicate on a Regular Basis.In addition to the suggestions above, you might want to consider having weekly or bi-weekly check-ins or conversation with your boyfriend to talk about the highs, lows, and concerns that each of you is having that week. This doesn’t have to be anything formal, but something that can be a fun, light-hearted activity that you do together over dinner or relaxing on the couch at night. You can even use conversation starters to explore fun conversations. Making a conversation with your boyfriend a regular event, can make it easier to discuss difficult conversation topics as they arise and help you and your boyfriend understand each other’s communication styles. Let your boyfriend step in and make decisions about when he wants to talk and what he wants to talk about, as much as you do.
Still Struggling? BetterHelp Has a Solution
Learning the right ways to communicate is the best thing you can do to improve your relationship. When you find communication lagging between you and your boyfriend, a couple’s therapist may be able to help you build better strategies together. You might consider working with an individual therapist as well to address how your past has impacted the way you communicate and learn how to improve upon that. If having healthy conversation with your boyfriend is a priority, this may be something you want to seek out help for.
BetterHelp makes talking to a therapist easy- by allowing you to get help from wherever you are and allowing you to reach out in the moment, instead of waiting for an appointment. Read below for some reviews of our BetterHelp counselors, from people experiencing a range of relationship communication issues.
“Rachel is awesome! Gently encouraging and very responsive. I prefer to communicate via messages and I love that that is an option. I feel that she totally understands me and is never judgemental. The stress from work impacts my partner less since I’ve been talking to Rachel – I am managing my stress and insecurity better.”
“I’ve worked with Alyson for 1 month and it was my first time working with a therapist. From when I started, I feel so much better. I was dealing with frustrations in my relationship and I also was constantly stressed and anxious. Alyson showed me ways to communicate better in my relationship and how to work at them. She also helped me with stress management tactics and now I feel really good about how to handle my stress. I feel much less anxious now. Overall I am in a much happier place and obstacles feel like merely obstacles because there’s stress-free ways to tackle life problems. Thank you so much, Alyson!”
Communication is important in a healthy relationship. If you feel that your communication with your partner could be improved, there is help waiting.
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