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Using Feeling Words In A Relationship

It is said you teach what you most need to learn - and that is why I teach about how to express negative feelings in a healthy, constructive way. I don't always do this myself, but I can still teach the concept and principles.

My partner does a better job of applying my ideas, fortunately for me....

I say fortunately because if she didn't we probaby would have broken up by now because I am so sensitive to criticism and verbal attacks or disapproval and judgment of any kind. It would hurt to much to hear her express her negative feelings in the "normal" ways, so I would probaby have ended the relationship one way or another.

In any case, here is what I wanted to show you from our real life. I won't give all the background now because I feel pressed for time but here is an email she sent me:

im sorry i didnt write back sooner. ive been having a lot of trouble writing you an email because im afraid if i tell you how bad i feel, you might feel more insecure and self protective. Which would be understandable, but i dont want to make things worse.

But then i figure i can't just keep avoiding saying stuff because that will probably make things worse long term as well.

but yeah... i do feel pretty bad. i feel hurt and hurtful. punished, abandoned, un-forgiven, confused, unimportant, ignored, rejected, uninformed, burdensome, unloved, unwanted, very insecure, paranoid, self destructive, suicidal, afraid.

and i dont know what to do about anything anymore. everything causes me pain.

its been really shitty here with my sister too.

im sorry im being so negative. i just hate my life so much.

see you soon



i just read that again.. and started to cry....

which is my point actually - though i didn't plan this... i planned to say i didn't feel attacked when read the mail... i felt more empathy, understanding and compassion - and guilt. deserved guilt. see note

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While texting my partner I thoght "I need to forgive myself quickly so I can listen to her" ie focus on her pain etc.  
S. Hein
Kuala Lumpor
Jan 22, 2012