Sometimes, when I suggest to one of my clients that she ask for something she’s wanting, or have a conversation to clearly address an issue she and her partner have been pushing aside, she will utter the words: “I can’t talk to him about that”. If you’ve felt the same way, hear this: “CAN’T” is not the truth. There is no topic that is off-limits for you and your partner. You can talk to him about any of the things. The only reason you aren’t talking to him is that you’re afraid of a feeling you may feel when you have the conversation. You’re afraid he won’t take it well and will get upset, and you'll have feelings about that. You’re afraid you’re going to feel hurt, or confused, or angry, disappointed, rejected, or embarrassed -- or any negative emotion! Totally understandable. But, in the end, it's causing you more pain, and less of the loving connection I want for you. Think of the woman who's avoiding sex because it has not been good for her lately. Her partner hasn’t been touching her in a way that brings her much pleasure. But she feels too uncomfortable to express how she prefers to be touched. What ends up happening is her partner feels confused, unwanted and unloved, and a widening rift grows between them. So now they aren’t even enjoying each other’s company. By letting her fear of discomfort stop her from having a conversation about how she prefers being touched, she creates for herself a whole bucket load of other painful emotions about her relationship. There is a major emotional cost when we are afraid of feeling negative emotions. In our marriages, it steals from us the capacity to have true honest authentic connection. By avoiding your feelings like this, what you are actually doing is replacing them with problems that remain unresolved, ongoing disconnection, and endless frustration that your marriage doesn’t feel better. You end up creating for yourself deepening resentment and never-ending feelings of not being supported or understood, and of not being on the same page with your partner. My husband and I never avoid the hard conversations. Both of us are willing to feel whatever feelings come up.
None of our hard feelings remain below the surface silently seething, threatening to push us apart. Because we talk about our feelings, our desires, and what is troubling us in our marriage, even when it’s uncomfortable. The result is that we solve our problems, and are able to give each other more of what we each want! We remain close and have so much more access to feeling fondness and love for each other. As HSPs we feel deeply. So the fear of these harder feelings can be strong. As can the hard feelings themselves. So our work, even more than non-HSPs- is to be able to feel deeply in a healthy way. To have a peaceful relationship with a full spectrum of human emotion. Here’s the truth: You’re going to have negative emotions one way or the other, so you might as well have ones that bring more closeness more love, instead of less of it. When you are courageous enough to feel any feeling, you will be able to say the hard thing. And that will likely bring you MORE of the feelings you really WANT. And when you know how to work with your feelings in a healthy way, the hard ones not only move on quicker, but they just aren’t as big a deal. They feel like a little road bump, and then you’re over it.
If you’re ready to feel the most peaceful you’ve ever felt with your strong feelings AND learn the best approach to navigate any topic that needs addressing, come coach with me.
You’ll finally be able to have great effective conversations that actually solve issues with your significant other, so you can feel like a loving supportive team together, and get more of what you want in your marriage.
Email me and say “let’s talk” and we’ll set up a free consult as a next step.