Familiarity Breeds Miscommunications

Why doesn't your husband understand you? A new research found that being too close to another person may actually hamper communications:

The spouses consistently overestimated their ability to communicate, and did so more with their partners than with strangers.

Prof Keysar's colleague Prof Kenneth Savitsky said: "A wife who says to her husband, 'it's getting hot in here,' as a hint for her husband to turn up the air conditioning a notch, may be surprised when he interprets her statement as a coy, amorous advance instead.

"Some couples may indeed be on the same wavelength, but maybe not as much as they think. You get rushed and preoccupied, and you stop taking the perspective of the other person, precisely because the two of you are so close."


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I think this study is stupid because of this:

The spouses sat in chairs with their backs to each other and tried to discern the meaning of each other's ambiguous phrases.

The researchers used phrases common in everyday conversations to see if the spouses were better at understanding phrases from their partners than from people they did not know.

If the husbands and wives could just use their own lingo, I'm sure they could understand each other.
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