Couple in a pier
If Your SO Isn't Great At Communicating, Here's How To Make It Work


One of the most common pieces of relationship advice is to communicate with your partner openly and regularly. Obviously, this can be confusing if you're trying to figure out how to date a bad communicator. I mean, yes, if we were all great communicators who knew exactly what we were feeling at all times and were able to express those feelings perfectly with our partners that would be ideal. But, of course, that's not always the case. Some people really are great communicators and others are just terrible at trying to express their thoughts and feelings to their partners.

If your partner falls into the latter group, you've come to the right place. In a recent Reddit AskWomen thread, ladies shared their best tips for making a relationship work with a partner who isn't necessarily a great communicator. The best part? These women aren't just pulling these tips from thin air. No, they're speaking from personal experience. These six women have all actually been in relationships with bad communicators and they've decided to bless us all with their super helpful advice.

Of course, every relationship is different, and what works for one couple isn't necessarily guaranteed to solve another couple's problem. But hopefully, you'll find some inspiration below for the next time your partner just isn't getting their message across.

She tries not to get mad.
He goes quiet and I can usually work it out but I encourage him to voice it and I don’t get mad, so he knows it safe to communicate feelings without me losing it and we go from there


She lets him know she's there when he's ready to talk.
If I sense that he may be upset about something, I bring it up. I ask him questions and talk him through it. If he still doesn’t feel like talking about it at the time, I just let him know that when he feels comfortable addressing the issue to let me know and I’ll be here to listen.


She asks him what's going on.
I ask. It can be difficult when he’s a quiet person anyway, and likes to spend time alone, but after 6 years together I can tell the difference between ‘normal quiet’ and ‘somethings up quiet’.
It’s not that he is averse to talking about his feelings, he just won’t offer them without prompting/reassurance.


She reads his body language.
My husband isn't the most vocal about his deep dark emotions. If he's angry, I can usually tell my body language, but he will tell me if something I did wasn't okay with him. If he needs love or craves intimacy, he gets really touchy. He'll scoot towards me so I can scratch his back, lays his head in my lap, touches me with his feet while we're sitting on the couch, etc. He never voices his desire for affection, but he usually moves towards me in a way I know he just needs it. So yeah, body language.


They developed a communication style that works for them.
My husband and I entered our relationship with both of us having problems with expressing our emotions. Over the years we developed our own way of communicating love to each other. Something as simple as holding hands for a couple of seconds while we are playing on our computers (our desks are close by) or my husband loves to mess with me when he wants attention. We also text non stop when we are apart about random stuff. its the little things that mean the most, but you have to build a foundation to have those little things


Know when it's no longer worth your time.
Just ended a relationship with one of these, and his inability to recognize his own feelings and communicate about them is why the relationship didn’t work. I loved him and it devastated me to see the relationship unravel, but there was nothing I could do. Hopefully he goes to therapy and takes self-improvement seriously. Even though I know it’s not my job to do more than 50% of the emotional labor in a relationship, I always do, and I end up feeling exhausted and resentful when the dust settles. Expecting people to do their fair share in a relationship is not unreasonable. Setting these boundaries and expectations is important, and I’ve learned now that enforcing them is just as important.


Communication may be the foundation of a great relationship, but it's not necessarily a skill that comes naturally to everyone. Luckily, you can get there over time with a little commitment, practice, and hard work. You got this.