Rose-Ann Pryce weighs in on the im­por­tance of com­mu­ni­ca­tion in mar­riage

Jamaica Gleaner - - FAMILY & RELIGION - Shanique Sa­muels Gleaner Writer

N GALA­TIANS 5, Paul taught that one of the fruits of the flesh is ‘dis­cord’. He said we are prone to of­fend and up­set oth­ers, to hate, to with­hold for­give­ness, and to be di­vided. This is some­thing ev­ery cou­ple needs to be aware of, whether mar­ried or not. The in­tent of the en­emy is to sow dis­cord among us be­cause he likes noth­ing that is good in the sight of God; and to the Lord, mar­riage is beau­ti­ful.

Christo­pher and Rose-Ann Pryce have known each other for over 11 years, but their jour­ney as a mar­ried cou­ple started in June of last year. The pair met at the Percy Junor Hospi­tal in Spald­ing, Manch­ester, and al­though they didn’t start a re­la­tion­ship im­me­di­ately, they main­tained a friend­ship that took its time and blos­somed into a match made in heaven. “We shared our dreams and as­pi­ra­tions and mo­ti­vated and en­cour­aged each other as we worked to­wards achiev­ing our goals. Some years later, he and I be­came a cou­ple and we de­vel­oped such a strong bond that we de­cided to get mar­ried,” Rose-Ann said.

“At the on­set, I ex­pe­ri­enced mo­ments of trep­i­da­tion be­cause, while I loved my part­ner, I also recog­nised that we were about to make a very big step in our lives. I prayed and I fasted be­cause I needed to be cer­tain that I was mak­ing the right choice,” she told Fam­ily and Re­li­gion.

RE­SPECT AND FRIEND­SHIP

Rose-Ann says she strongly be­lieves that love is very im­por­tant in re­la­tion­ships, so too are mu­tual re­spect and friend­ship. These she lists as some of the el­e­ments that keep their mar­riage healthy.

“Con­flicts do arise oc­ca­sion­ally, but as a past stu­dent of sev­eral lan­guage cour­ses, I have learnt that com­mu­ni­ca­tion breaks down bar­ri­ers, so I en­cour­age my hus­band to al­ways ex­press how he feels about any­thing that is af­fect­ing him. I also ex­press my feel­ings to him and we al­low each other to ex­press our thoughts with­out in­ter­ject­ing. De­pend­ing on the is­sue, if the tim­ing is not right, we al­ways en­sure that we dis­cuss it later on when we are in a bet­ter emo­tional place. Most im­por­tant, we never go to bed with any un­re­solved con­flict,” she ex­plained to Fam­ily and Re­li­gion.

Cou­ples are likely to get dis­tracted eas­ily with all that is hap­pen­ing in each in­di­vid­ual’s life, but Rose-Ann says when­ever they get a chance to spend time to­gether, they make it count. “We watch movies to­gether and spend hours talk­ing about ev­ery­thing and noth­ing. We play with each other and text each other when we are at work. We also keep our de­vo­tions and go out to­gether, and there are other small things that we do to­gether, and they all make a dif­fer­ence in keep­ing our re­la­tion­ship ac­tive,” she said. She added: “I love my part­ner’s abil­ity to lis­ten to a sit­u­a­tion, as­sess it from dif­fer­ent an­gles and then give a work­able so­lu­tion. He of­ten gives me very good ad­vice. “Con­flicts in mar­riage do not have to be detri­men­tal to the re­la­tion­ship. Like all other tri­als, it is meant to test our faith, de­velop char­ac­ter and draw us closer to God. If it reaches the point where you feel like throw­ing in the towel, seek coun­selling. There is noth­ing that the Lord can­not fix. Your mar­riage is a very valu­able in­vest­ment. Don’t throw it away,” she con­cluded.

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