I sat at the restaurant and reviewed the menu. I was starving, as per usual, and was hoping service would be quick. It wasn’t, but that did give me time to think and to look around and try and enjoy the atmosphere. I, typically, don’t like dining alone, but sometimes – out of necessity and hunger, I must. While I looked around, my eyes came to rest on an older couple that had been recently seated nearby. They were in their mid to late seventies and obviously husband and wife. 

Why do I say obviously? Because they barely spoke. I watched them throughout my meal and they, I swear, never said a word to each other. I found this utterly fascinating that they could dine out together and then choose to never speak and it is a choice. I have seen this type of behavior before – usually at breakfast – one of them brings a newspaper and the other a paperback or crossword puzzles. I guess I am too much of a talker for this type of conduct; it would never work for me. I cannot keep my mouth shut or shut the other person out, the person I am interested in or with whom I have a partnership / relationship.

We talk about marriage as a union. This is a term that also applies to the business world. As in, “The marriage between our two companies will be a fruitful one.” Marriage is a partnership. And in any partnership – good partnership – there needs to be communication. I am dumbfounded by couples who do not speak, and I am also dumbfounded by partners that fail to communicate. It is requisite in any relationship where there is interest in its maintenance.

When I propose a partnership, when I cement a relationship, in order to guarantee its success, I need to talk, email, communicate with the other party to make sure my needs are met and that their needs are met. When there is silence, no one is happy, no one’s necessities are ensured. When I see these couples that barely speak and I remember my own failed personal relationships, in large part, due to lack of communication, it is a vivid reminder that the doorway needs to be open and usually I have to take that step to walk through it.

I failed to see any joy in this couple’s faces. I wondered how their home life was fulfilling or how happiness was allowed in. Maybe that is how their relationship worked. Maybe that is how it has always been. I suppose I could say, “That don’t make it right.” But I guess it is what it is. Sad and, thank goodness, not my life, nor my work. I re-committed when I witnessed this failure, this so-called marriage. I re-committed my efforts for open communication. It is not merely a desire, it is a must. And with that said, is there really a choice? Not if your choice is for success.

©by rayannethorn

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Wow great read.....
Hey Rayanne--- I am probably guilty as charged. Any good books you would recommend on relationship building? Thanks
Maybe they've been together so long because the Little Mrs. has learned to let her husband enjoy his breakfast in peace? Maybe over the years they "covered it" so to speak and have a 6th sense about each other - both knowing what the other is thinking........

Perhaps that has been the key to their success?
I'm gonna do a rare thing... and agree with Jerry. There are times I've been out to dinner with my wife and had this happen. Maybe we've had a busy day and we both just need to calm and gather for a time. But here's the thing: with a superficial relationship, you feel you have to communicate. Silence is uncomfortable. Only when you're totally at peace in someone's company do you no longer feel the pressure to make noise. Guarantee you one thing - whenever my wife and I leave a restaurant after one of those occasional quieter dinners, we'll be laughing and giggling all the way home - often about the uncomfortable first-date couple who couldn't stop talking, but said nothing of substance!

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