Good communication in marriage is crucial to having a healthy relationship, and one of the hardest things can be admitting you were wrong after an argument with your partner. We’ve all been there – and most of us probably many, many times.

The argument starts with something seemingly insignificant – say, your spouse tells you that a trash bag will break, but you ignore them until garbage has spilled everywhere. Because you’ve read my Houston relationship counselor blogs and perhaps subscribe to the FREE monthly newsletter, you know that communication in marriage is important and bark out something in the neighborhood of, “Fine, you were right, I’m sorry.”

Much to your surprise, your significant other doesn’t smile and tell your everything’s okay, but shake their head and look more annoyed. Uh-oh. You apologized? What’s their problem? Suddenly you find yourself engaged in a yelling match with your spouse and you’re wondering how it got to this point and why you’re so mad.

Communication in Marriage: Apologies Need to Be Sincere

That may seem like the most obvious statement ever, but too often in my Houston relationship counselor practice, I witness clients apologizing to each other when they are clearly still angry, and it comes across in their tone and word choice.

Communication in marriage isn’t something that should just be done on remote control. It needs to be real and genuine, and sometimes this might mean that you need to step back and think about what’s really bothering you before attempting to offer an apology, even if you know that you were wrong. Many times, when we screw something up, we end up feeling shame and embarrassment, and if we’re still feeling those things when we apologize, they can come across to our significant others as anger, annoyance, or a lack of sincerity.

Sometimes, Real Love is eating crow, admitting you were wrong or offering a sincere apology.  It is also being mature enough to generously receive a sincere effort by our spouse or partner to repair things. It is only when you have moved past those feelings of shame and embarrassment that you will be able to genuinely take responsibility for your actions without making excuses, ask for forgiveness, and work to make things right. But taking the extra effort is worth it for improved communication in marriage.