Even as wives and husbands dine together, utter words of devotion, worry about each other, often each has thoughts and feelings they keep to themselves. “He won’t understand,” a wife can think; or, “He can’t handle it if I tell him this, so don’t rock the boat.” Troubling both people, meantime, is the growing distance between them.
Women can learn why couples have trouble communicating, and what will enable them to talk honestly, pleasurably with each other, at the Understanding Marriage! class, on Saturday, January 10th: “What’s Said & Unsaid in Marriage—How Can We Make Sense of These?”
The basis of the event, from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM, is the definitive statement by Eli Siegel, founder of Aesthetic Realism: “Marriage is a means of liking the world through a person. Too often, though, marriage is a contemptuous exclusion of the world.” And consultants Barbara Allen, Anne Fielding, and I, of the teaching trio There Are Wives, will conduct a lively, deeply informative discussion of the following sentences from Mr. Siegel’s landmark lecture Aesthetic Realism Looks at Things: Communication:
Communication is the way a person makes his or her thoughts part of another person’s life, or thoughts. The agonizing problem of today is that people can live together for years and really not transmit what they feel to each other. The fields that are not subjects of communication between the ordinary husband and wife are tremendous. All the things that haven’t been said and could have been said, if brought together, would dazzle people with their revelatory quality and their beauty, maybe–also their surprisingness….You have to respect and like what you express yourself to before the job of communication can have a fair chance.
Women haven’t known that whether a wife talks or doesn’t talk to her husband, and what she says or doesn’t say, have to do with how she sees the whole world—whether she hopes to respect it and like it! Each woman will come away from this practical, cultural class with new knowledge—the knowledge for real communication to be and thrive in her marriage!
The Aesthetic Realism Foundation, 141 Greene St., off W. Houston St., in SoHo, is a not-for-profit educational foundation. The fee for the class is $10. For more information, call 212.777.4490.