When a couple is frustrated, each partner feels alone and misunderstood. Each partner attempts to convince the other of how to understand them.
What the partners are doing during this process is skipping the most important part. The most important part is that they feel alone and misunderstood.
The solution must begin here, in between the dialogue, where the real hurt is occurring.
The richness and depth of each partner exists in why they feel alone and misunderstood.
Before debating intellectual solutions about what you each want, you must acknowledge that you want to be closer, that you’re hurting, and that you don’t know yet how to fix it.
The vulnerable words must happen before you will both listen to each other, while you both feel alone and so…
The next time you and your partner get into an argument, have a disagreement, don’t know how to communicate your feelings and thoughts and/or feel defensive and misunderstood, consider saying something like this:
“I seem to be getting defensive and I think I’m causing myself and you more frustration. What’s a little scary to say is how much I want to feel closer to you, and how much I don’t know how to get across to you what’s bothering me. I’m going to guess that you might feel the same way. So do you want to feel more connected to me? And if you do, maybe we can be on the same team here.”
About the Author: Derek HART is one of Your Monthly Mentors, a Relationship Coach, Speaker, Writer, and the founder of UnderstandEachOther.com based in San Anselmo, California. He has been counseling people since 1990, with over 27,000 hours in experience. The unique experience he brings to his counseling practice is based upon years of doing his own deep inner work. A student and teacher of the human journey, Derek has continually studied the great works of the top psychology and spiritual masters of our time. Read More…