What safety in a relationship looks like:
I have the ability to share with you if I feel hurt by you, and I know that there’s usually space in you to hear it, without our conversation getting diverted into your guilt and/or defensiveness.
When I have to share something difficult with you, I expend very little energy worrying about how you will respond, worrying about a predictable trigger.
I focus more on finding a way to share what I’m feeling without criticizing you, and cultivating an atmosphere where I still share my care for you.
I don’t dehumanize you and make you feel like an object that has harmed me.
I trust that we both know how to complete conversations where we both feel some new understanding of each other.
If the conversation is too difficult, we both know we can take a time out, and we both set a time that we will resume the conversation, and we both commit to the time.
We both know that time does not heal all wounds. We both know time means time has passed and the wound is right there waiting.
If we are to engage and deepen with each other, we know that hurting each other is inevitable, and will happen.
We both know that learning how to repair is the key, not preventing getting hurt.
I know I am still loved by you, and that you are only upset with my behavior, about one thing that can be concretely named.
And you know you are loved by me.
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…