Tag Archives: relationship

Relationship Talk


Every now and then a couple’s got to talk. Particularly when transitions are looming, both parties know that there will be changes in their relationship.

The right moment to talk is pretty important, as those of us remember from adverse reactions on other occasions. One such moment comes up when there’s extended time together, like driving all afternoon through lovely countryside. And so Jon and I talked. We’ve been married for 15 years and it isn’t as though we haven’t talked practically every day. This talk was in the context of potential changes in our lives and how it might affect us individually and as a couple.

  • The very things that attract people to one another can irritate when repeated over and over.
  • The tender places or scars from parents or partners years ago remain super sensitive to perceived slights.
  • Mood and headaches unrelated to one person affects how s/he hears the other.
  • Assumptions get right in the way of communication.
  • Even after years together you might be very surprised to realize how you hurt each other.
  • Finding a safe place to talk can save your sanity as well as your relationship.

Two good-hearted people who don’t want to hurt one another will do it anyway. Usually it’s a mistake or a misunderstanding. Sometimes it’s because you didn’t realize it would be a big deal when you went against your best instincts and made the wrong move.

In what ways have you disappointed your Significant Other? How do you get past the old habits and get to the truth? How do you manage big transitions and support your integrity as a couple?

These are not simple questions that to answer once and for all. Relationships over time need nearly constant tweaking and occasional overhauls. I’ve been through a divorce and understand why that it may be both necessary and painful. Better communication would have helped a great deal.

Sometimes the magic works but I think the magic requires hard work to make it even look easy. I’m still learning!                               Discuss.

Circle of Colleagues


A group of trusted peers helps many a person stay sane!

Who but the people in your line of work understand fully the challenges you face? When I was a young woman, recently married and with one then two sons to raise, neighborhood mothers offered a lifeline as we learned by experience and from each other. Since then I have often developed special relationships with co-workers.

As a clergyperson I find collegial connections essential to my formation and continuing education.

Clergy  love the people we serve but we need friends among our peers. They are the folks we can lean on in times of struggle–and there are many! My group of twelve meets monthly if we can possibly be there. We share a devotional time of reflection and ritual. We brag on our successes but more importantly we share the raw edges of our lives, the places where we’re bruised and bleeding. We are bound by mutual expectations of confidentiality so that we, too, have a safe place to be open and real.

Uncertainty, confusion and doubt? Of course.      Requests for advice? Sometimes.      Leaning on one another? By all means.

We hold one another accountable when our professionalism or actions fall short of our Code of Ethics as Unitarian Universalists. Between meetings we often follow up with a phone call of support or a one-on-one meeting. We serve as mentors to one another–either on a formal basis or through simple collegiality.

Then we go back to our ministries, refreshed and ready to serve.

Thank you, colleagues!