How to Handle Any Thorny Communications Issues


Lives of Style’s DatingSpeak ™ ©2015 addresses questions about dating, relationships and communication.

Our Lives of Style authority–Laura Pugliese, shares must-know dating “Do’s and Don’ts” that will help you find success in your relationships.

Lives of Style: My husband has a work/live space in his artistic studio and he was working late and suggested that he sleep in his studio. Right away I felt rejected. How can I talk with him in the future so I don’t have hurt feelings?

Laura: If your husband was working hard late into the night with the knowledge that he had another long day ahead of him the next, then he was probably weighing all of that and concluded that staying in his studio was a more logical choice for him that evening. For some reason you received that information as something personal against you. Feelings come as they come without logic, so it may be a matter of remembering to stop and think before you respond from an emotional place.

In the future when a similar issue arises you can say, “Honey, thank you for telling me your suggestion about (insert subject). You have every right to do what you want, however I want to be honest and tell you that I am feeling sensitive about you doing that. I don’t want to be selfish, and I do want support your decision in doing what’s best for you in this situation. It would feel best to me if this wasn’t a frequent occurrence because I love sleeping with you at night. What are your thoughts?”

Lives of Style: I’m married to a man who I love and the other day I called him by the name of an old boyfriend and he was hurt and asked me questions about him, for example how long has it been since you’ve seen him, why are thinking about him, what’s going etc. How do I handle this situation? I haven’t seen my ex for years prior my getting married. It just slipped out.

Laura: I think it’s best to be very clear and answer all of your husband’s questions. I understand it was a mistake, but imagine how you would feel if it was him calling you by and ex-girlfriend’s name? You can say, “Honey, I understand that it had to be very unpleasant for you when I called you by the wrong name, and I am truly sorry for any discomfort it caused. You have every right to speculate and question me. It honestly was just a mistake. I have not seen him in many years prior to being with you, and I haven’t been thinking about him at all. You are my husband, and the only man I am focused on. What are your thoughts about what I am telling you?”

Lives of Style: I have been engaged to my fiance for 5 months now and we just found out we are pregnant. His parents are very upset and are giving us the cold shoulder because they are very traditional and don’t think this is the appropriate order of things. What can I say to my fiance and do I say anything to his mother who I was close to? It’s very hurtful.

Laura: I think it’s best to have compassion about them being upset, and give them some time do digest it. Do your best to understand that it’s a lifetime of a certain belief system they have that has taught them their views. Don’t say anything to your fiance’s parents without first discussing it with him. Get his consent first. You can say to him, “I know your parents are very upset, and I am doing my best to be compassionate about their feelings based on their traditional views. At the same time I am feeling sensitive about their reaction and sad because I have been close to your mom and want that to continue. What are your thoughts about us talking with them and saying, ‘We want to talk with you about the current situation regarding the pregnancy. When is a good time for you to hear us?’” Wait until they agree and tell you when they are open to it.

When they agree to discuss it, then you and your finance can say, “You have every right to be disappointed and dislike the fact that we got pregnant before we are married. We also want you to know that we understand that this is not comfortable to you both. We respect your feelings, and we are sorry for all of the discomfort this situation has brought. We love you very much and want to all move forward together and continue to be close. What are your thoughts about us doing that?”

Lives of Style: I’m dating a man who is 10 years younger and normally this does not bother me but he looks at every good looking woman who we pass on the street and I see them smiling back at him. How can I address this because it does not feel good.

Laura: You can say, “Honey, I want to talk with you about something that feels sensitive to me. Is now a good time?” Wait for him to say, “Yes.”  Then you can say, “Often times when we are out together it appears that you are looking at every good looking woman. You have every right to do what you want, and I don’t think you would deliberately do something to inflict discomfort on me. I realize that it’s very uncomfortable, so I wanted to talk with you about it in order to avoid harboring negative feelings which would affect our relationship. What are your thoughts about the feelings I am sharing with you?”

Lives of Style: My best friend and I both have a crush on the same the guy. I found out that she slept with him last weekend but he just called me up to ask me out for this coming weekend and told me that he is not interested in her. What do I say to him and what do I say to her?

Laura: He just slept with your best friend, and now he’s telling you he’s not interested in her and wants to take you out. He sounds selfish and immature. You are both worth more than he is capable of at this time in his life. Honor your friendship and your self worth, and let this one go. I suggest you tell him, “I would have been interested in going out with you if you hadn’t already gone out with my best friend. It is no longer something that feels good to me to agree to do with you now.”

To your friend you can say, “I want to tell you something about (insert his name). Is now a good time?” Wait for her to say, “Yes.” Then you can say, “You are my best friend, so I want to be very honest with you. (Insert name) asked me out for this weekend. I want you to know that I told him “No” because of your recent involvement with him. How do you feel about what I am sharing with you?”

Lives of Style and Lives of Style’s DatingSpeak ™ ©2015 want to facilitate answers to questions.  While authorities such as Laura may not be able to email each of you individually, select questions will be answered. 

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