Relationship Phrases 101

There are 6 relationship phrases that are considered important when looking at the health of a relationship or family.

They are “Please,” “Thank you,” “You’re Welcome,” “I love you,” “I’m sorry” and “I forgive you.” Although at first glance this appears to be just about good manners, it is important to think about the context of when and how you use these phrases. Do you use them with your partner or spouse? With your children? Are they encouraged between partners, parent and child, siblings?

Sometimes it’s easy to say “Grab me a coke when you go to the kitchen;” and forget the importance of the appreciation phrases of  “please” and “thank you.” Are you able to say sorry to your partner? To your child? That is sometimes a tough one, and it often comes from what we learned about apologies growing up. When we say “I’m sorry” (and it is a proper apology…tomorrow’s blog post!) we often get back an “It’s okay,” which allows us to focus on repair, an important part of a healthy relationship.

The phrase “I love you” seems innocent enough but it too can often be something that is a struggle for people; to be able to say it, or to assume that with time it doesn’t need to be said. And yet being able to say “I love you” without restriction is a wonderful gift, filled with acceptance and connection; two essential components of a sound relationship. And so with this food for thought, it might be time to allow ourselves to bring these good manners back to the table.

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