When we get to know someone over a long period of time it is natural to think we know how they will react. Sometimes that gets us into trouble.
When we are working toward strengthening or mending a relationship, we often make wrong assumptions about the other person. This ultimately leads to failure within the relationship. During relationship building, if we build a foundation based on assumptions rather than direct communication, we are likely to falter because our assumptions may not be correct.
In well established relationships, we often have a rock solid foundation. Over time, we begin to assume that we know the person so well, that we know exactly how they will think, feel and react. We feel so safe within the relationship that we may not notice when someone has changed.
People constantly change and how we may have reacted long ago may be very different than how we would react today. Individuals grow and change. They take on new hobbies and they like things they formerly loathed. This is the nature of personal growth. If the other person fails to recognize the changes their partner has made, and assumes everything is the same as it always was, it can unravel a relationship.
A good rule of thumb is to never make assumptions about the thoughts, feelings and actions of another, no matter how long you have known them. In order to do that, we need to become aware of what we are assuming. Many of our assumptions are so ingrained that we may not be aware that what we know for fact is simply an assumption. That can lead us down a very destructive path where we are often dismayed by our partner calling us out on something we ‘knew’ to be true. It is absolutely critical to the health of relationships that we become aware of our assumptions.
Once we are attuned to our assumptions we can overcome them by asking questions. The simplest way is to simply ask a direct question. You will have to be careful about how you frame the question, but if you do so in a caring and loving manner, you will most likely get the answers you seek because your sincerity and interest in the other person will strengthen and revitalize your bond.