Do You Ask Your Spouse, "Can I Kiss You?" We think we can read our spouses wants and desires, but in reality most are probably not very good at it. BY MIKE DOMITRZ
Some couples might be surprised at how often they misinterpret their partner.
“ Reading minds is a skill most people admit they donít possess. If you canít read minds, being precise with body language does not work either.”
Do you ask your spouse, "Can I kiss you?" Consent is a subject we often associate with dating, but marriageÖ not so much. Why is that? Is it because after a certain amount of time passes, we "just know" when our significant other is "ready?" We are so in tune with their body language that verbal consent is simply not needed?
Body language is the most common form of communication in any relationship. As mentioned, most married people don't ask before they kiss their love. Instead, they try to figure out when is the right time to make their "move" by reading body language.
Is body language reliable? No. If it were, you would never experience confusing moments in the beginning of intimacy or during intimacy. You would always know how comfortable your spouse was with you.
You're not convinced and think this is ridiculous. Of course you can read your spouse's body language and know when they're comfortable with intimacy. Fine, you should have no problem with this challenge.
Body Language Challenge
Challenge No. 1: Imagine you are single. Your not-yet spouse is sitting across the room from you. Send him or her messages through your body language to tell them you want to ask them out on a date. Will your partner interpret your signals perfectly?
Challenge No. 2: You want to go on a date night; write down all of the body language signals you could use to communicate with each other your intent to go on a date night. Include every signal imaginable. Example: moving closer to let him or her know you want to spend time with them.
Discussing the body language challenge
Challenge No. 1 Results:
If you tried this challenge with your spouse, did either of you laugh? The reason people start laughing during this exercise is because each of you realizes how silly you look trying to send body language signals. While trying to read another personís body language, you feel like you are trying to read the personís mind. Reading minds is a skill most people admit they donít possess. If you canít read minds, being precise with body language does not work either.
For body language to be an effective means of communication, everyone needs to use the same signals. Since every person reads "The Look" signals differently, you cannot guarantee the correct interpretation of body language.
Challenge No. 2 Results:
Share the answers with your spouse. If you wrote down every possible body language signal, you would be writing for days (flirting for fun, letting a person know you are attracted to them, sending the signal you want to kiss, etc.). Since an infinite number of signals exists, knowing all of them is impossible. Notice how many different items you wrote compared to your spouse.
The Body Language Challenge shows you multiple examples of how body language can cause confusion and misunderstanding between two people on a date or in a relationship. Each of the examples is a real-life scenario that frequently happens to people. Each challenge proved body language is not accurate. We need to use a better form of communication.
* Body language is unreliable and often misinterpreted!
* Utilize verbal communication.
* Do not project or force your wants onto the other person.
Should I ask my spouse to kiss me?
YES! Regardless of how long a relationship has existed, mutual respect is essential in all relationships, and body language is unreliable and often misinterpreted.
Married partners can, and have, been sexually assaulted by their spouses. Whether you have been married for three months or 40 years, no person owes sexual or intimate acts to a partner. People in long-term relationships and marriages still need consent. Talk with each other to ensure each person wants the intimacy. After all, donít you want to know that your spouse wants intimacy with you? Donít you agree they deserve to always have a voice? The greatest way to honor your spouseís sexual wants is by asking and respecting the answer.
Mike Domitrz is on a mission to create a culture of consent and respect through The DATE SAFE Project. As one of the leading voices for helping children, young adults, parents, educational institutions, and the US Military discuss dating, sexual decision-making, consent, and sexual assault, Mike speaks to tens of thousands of people yearly around the world; providing positive how-to skill sets and helpful insights for romantic relationships, sexual intimacy, and being safer. For more you can find him on Facebook and Twitter.