From Mercury’s perspective Earth also appears to be looping back. Picture: Pixabay

This week’s question is from Sue in Moreleta, Pretoria: “I asked my husband about a recent event and he just shrugged his shoulders. He said: ‘It is Mercury retrograde.’ How is that a reason? I don’t understand how Mercury retrograde applies to what happens in my relationship?”

Answer: Mercury retrograde is an astronomical event. The planets that orbit in our solar system all move in circles around the sun in the same direction, but at different speeds. From Earth’s orbit it appears as if Mercury loops back on itself a few times a year as it orbits around the sun. Mercury does not actually move backwards, but from our vantage point it appears that way. 

From Mercury’s perspective Earth also appears to be looping back. It is all about the perspective we have, because of where we are positioned. This backward appearance is what we call Mercury retrograde.

Before we turn to speculation about what this might mean, logically we are already aware that all of this is about an underlying focus on perception from a certain vantage point of how “something” appears to us.

When Mercury turns retrograde, people blame it as the cause for miscommunication, postponing arrangements and unexpected snags. Astrologists will warn us to expect delays, last-minute changes and technology breaking down. We are warned not to make big decisions, and told that we will feel irritable and impulsive. There is no observable and repeatable proof that Mercury retrograde is the reason for emotional and physical experiences. There is no empirical evidence that there is a link for cause and effect.

However, true or not, we cannot explain why experiences of cellphone lines crossing occur more during these times.

Communication and technology that rely on coding seem to be affected the most. It is our nature to want a reason to understand our experiences and to believe that we have some control in our lives.

Relationships have seasons and phases. Just like spring helps with new beginnings in the natural order of things, maybe Mercury retrograde challenges the perceptions we formed in our relationships.

It would be wise to put yourself in your partner’s position and remember that things might not be as they seem. You can choose during Mercury retrograde to be sensitive for any subconscious assumptions which occurred which do not serve you.

READ: Why building trust is not a cheap thrill

Let Mercury retrograde challenge any warped perceptions you may have. Relationships depend on communication to work; it follows that this creates an opportunity for couples to tune into each other more. As misunderstandings are highlighted, use this to reconnect by investing time to discuss important values.

Your relationship was built on agreements you have made.

Double check your understanding and refine your arrangements. Confirm travelling arrangements or, if you are superstitious, avoid travelling during these times. Don’t let misunderstandings get in the way of daily events. This may be why your husband shrugs his shoulders, as he avoids taking what happens personally. Choose what you want to believe or you could just ask him.

When you are already tuning into your partner’s feelings and not just listening to his or her words, you will know if your alignment is off and/or your perceptions have been misplaced.

Clear the air and spell out what you think is happening. Leave nothing to chance. Chances are it might not work in your favour. Practise patience, relax and reconnect to reduce the impact of Mercury retrograde.

Mercury retrograde ends on April 15 and occurs again from July 26 to August 18. Note this in your calendar and let me know if you agree or not.

* Adelé Green is a transformation specialist coach and the author of Can You See Me Naked: Grow in a conscious relationship. She provides answers here when posted on or contact her for coaching.

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