(6:05): So you have a perspective from that wide range. I think that’s very helpful. In preparation for this interview, I asked Parijat beforehand to share with me some of the most common issues that MySahana encounters with respect to marital issues.
I’d like to share with our listeners a few of the issues Parijat identified one by one. Then I will ask Parijat to share with our listeners some of the best ways to resolve each of these issues. The first issue that I’d like to ask Parijat to address is, “Why did my partner change after we got married?”
(6:41): That’s one that we get really often from the 50 to 60 year-old men and women. It’s mostly women, but both men and women have contacted us. People change. Everybody changes. If you notice that your partner has changed, you can be sure that you have changed as well. With all kinds of life events that happen and just by getting older, we tend to shift who we are as people.
I think any time in life overall, whether you just started dating somebody, if you’ve been married a few years or you’ve been married for numerous decades, it’s always a great idea to check in with each other. You can ask, “How do you feel about things? What are your opinions about things?” Make sure that you’re always on the same page. We’re all evolving all the time.
(7:32): That’s interesting. I thought it was a great point that you made. If you believe that your partner has changed, chances are that you have as well. The second issue I’d like you to address for our listeners is how to talk about sensitive topics like money, sex, children and religion without fighting.
(7:56): There are so many hot-button topics in every single relationship that come up where it just hits a nerve or it’s really hard to talk about because you feel so passionately about it. It happens to everyone. If you’re going through it, know that it’s not just you.
The easiest way to do that, and what I help people learn how to do, is to identify what this topic is. You mentioned that it could be money, sex, children, religion or anything else for that matter. Identify what that specific point of contention is. Then understand, know and be okay with the fact that you are not going to find a solution right away.
Prepare yourself for a slow discussion. The slower it goes, the less likely it’s going to build up and turn into this firestorm of fighting, which is usually where you get deadlocked. You don’t really make much progress at that point. Make sure you understand that it’s going to take a little bit of time.
Then sit down with your partner at a time that’s convenient for both of you and say, “Look, this is an issue that we have to resolve.” Take turns, which is really important. One of you should sit down and say, “This is how I feel about it.” Don’t go into solution mode yet. Just talk about your perspective so that your partner can understand where you’re coming from.
Then you switch sides and the other person takes a turn. That might be in the same conversation. It might have to be on a different day when it’s easier for each of you to listen to each other. The most important thing is that you completely understand where the other person is coming from. You don’t have to agree with it but if you understand it, you can empathize with them. You can understand why they might feel the way that they do.
That results in having compassion for each other. When that happens then you’re going to be looking at this obstacle as a team as opposed to opponents trying to change each other or trying to prove that you’re right. When you’re looking at it as a team, that is when you’re going to find the most successful opportunities to come up with a compromise that’s going to suit both of your needs.