Not validating feelings

Couples (and families, for that matter) get into trouble when they invalidate each other’s feelings.

Often, partners don’t mean to do it, but when arguments turn into conflicts, it’s common to hear statements like these: When your partner says, for instance, “I wish we spent more time together,” or, “I’m concerned about our finances,” he’s really saying, “I feel alone in this relationship,” and, “I’m scared.” Look behind the complaint for the feelings.

Your partner needs to know that you see his pain and that it matters to you. ” 2) Put yourself in your partner’s shoes and ask questions.

Instead of reacting defensively, which will probably invalidate your partner, try acknowledging his emotions. The goal here is to try to understand your partner’s emotional experience and why she is feeling that way.

But I do know that if you want to have better relationships with people, the skill of emotional validation is extremely useful. Validation allows a person to release their feelings in a healthy, safe and supportive way. Thus it builds bonds of caring, support, acceptance, understanding and trust.

The relationship will be better because with more validation you are going to have less debating, less conflicts, and less disagreement. When a person is feeling down, these bonds are sometimes all that another person needs to begin to feel better and solve their own problems.

You will also find that validation opens people up and helps them feel free to communicate with you. On the other hand, when they are feeling excited and enthusiastic, this validation encourages them and helps keep their spirits high.

We are demonstrating that we will still accept them after they have shared their feelings. How strongly are you feeling that (on a scale of 0-10)? We feel connected with them and they feel connected with us.Most of us truly want to help other people, but often we don't know how, or we try too hard and we start giving advice, as our parents did to us. Since Patty often uses naptime for her work, I've struggled to keep wakeup time from being a descent into wailing.But I have found that usually if I just validate someone, they are able to work out their own emotional problems even faster than if I were to give them my advice. Yesterday when he woke up, I practiced recognizing his feelings without fixing or correcting.Today, I’d like to take a break from exploring protective patterns in couple relationships and consider how couples can validate each other’s feelings. When you validate your partner, you are essentially saying, “I see how you are feeling.Your feelings are important to me, and it’s okay that you feel that way.” Everyone has a different subjective experience, and partners in distress experience painful emotions for all sorts of reasons.

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