Invalidating my feelings

03-Nov-2015 11:39

Start to listen for those phrases in your every day. Emotion-phobic exchanges aren’t always the end of the world. A lot of people feel obligated to “help you” if you say you are having a bad day.

Those “75 nice things” aren’t necessarily bad advice, but people hate to hear them if they are already in a negative mood.

(Granted, there are times when talking about such things is inappropriate or disrespectful.) They might squirm, fidget, or attack you sideways. Or put nicely, censor you, change the topic, distract you, or make it all seem like it’s a-okay. Because then they might have to take response ability for their actions, connect with you, empathize, or get in touch with themselves — which they’ve (unconsciously) decided is way too painful. How they respond (i.e., whether they censor you or not) might be a way to see/test how they feel about our relationship?

You’re not indefinitely available to other people whenever they want to vent about something. If someone asks you specifically how you are doing, what’s wrong, or what you think. After all, you were comfortable enough with that feeling to share it! Instead of looking at their own reaction and owning up to their own discomfort when you talk about something that’s “too” emotional — the other person blames you. Just remember, you deserve better than emotional censorship. Hi Melissa - Unless I am interacting with a therapist or someone I know won’t censor me, I’ve learned it’s best to automatically respond with an “I’m okay”.

They want their negative feelings to be justified and they don’t want to (or have to) let them go.

It might even mean “I don’t want to hear about it.” In which case, it’s an emotion-phobic exchange. Whenever you talk about how you’re really feeling or what you really think — and it happens to be negative — people get uncomfortable. It’s not okay for Vincent to vent without Traci’s consent, let alone expect her to be receptive, concerned, or even able to listen. And Traci deflects his vent by saying, “Look Vincent, I have to pick up my mom from the airport in ten minutes. People who don’t want to experience their own negative emotions sure as heck don’t want you to express yours. Do you hear any of the above phrases in your daily grind? I guess it would be best to take the risk in the company of whom you believe might be a close friend.

You just have to listen carefully to read between the lines. Makes it all your fault that they’re unwilling to get emotional, or to be fully present, or to genuinely accept that you feel the way you feel. And also remember, you’re capable of censoring yourself, too. I understand it’s best to be very careful when it comes to expressing how you are truly feeling.

But you don’t have a problem with feeling the way you do.

You may be temporarily experiencing a negative emotion. (They only think it is.) Your emotions may be alerting you to problems in your environment and/or your thinking.

Anytime you talk about how some adversity (person, animal, situation, place or thing) upset, disappointed or wronged you, the other person will either: not the problem.

You become someone else’s problem when you voice what they can’t accept in their own self. Or you might see how uncomfortable they actually are, and rethink how you can (casually) relate to them. It’s tough sometimes to not respond with cliche advice when people say they are down.

The more you relate to yourself with respect and empathy, the more sensitive you will be, and the more you will want to be around other people who are committed to treating themselves with respect and empathy.

But you don’t have a problem with feeling the way you do. You may be temporarily experiencing a negative emotion. (They only think it is.) Your emotions may be alerting you to problems in your environment and/or your thinking. Anytime you talk about how some adversity (person, animal, situation, place or thing) upset, disappointed or wronged you, the other person will either: not the problem.You become someone else’s problem when you voice what they can’t accept in their own self. Or you might see how uncomfortable they actually are, and rethink how you can (casually) relate to them. It’s tough sometimes to not respond with cliche advice when people say they are down.The more you relate to yourself with respect and empathy, the more sensitive you will be, and the more you will want to be around other people who are committed to treating themselves with respect and empathy.Treating yourself with awareness is your template for treating others with awareness.