Communication and Confrontation PSA

couple

I was sitting in the office, minding my business, when I overheard my male coworkers discussing the difficulties of being in a relationship. Well… that’s the nice way to put it. In all honesty, they were simply griping about their wives. One guy in particular was saying that he specifically hates how he has to do both the cooking and washing up afterwards while another was venting about having to constantly pick up after the family dog.

Really, I wasn’t planning on interjecting or commenting on the situation, but somehow, I always get roped in. The guys know that about 6 months ago, I moved in with my long-term boyfriend, and they proceeded to basically ask me if things had fallen apart yet. When I told them, no, they hadn’t, they all responded with, “Just you wait” type interjections. That was extremely irritating to me because they made it seem like a miserable relationship was inevitable! There was just no avoiding it; just buckle up and get ready for the ride.

That would have been just fine with me prior to recovery. But now? There is no way that statement wouldn’t push my buttons because I know better.

So I asked to coworker who was tired of cooking and cleaning, “Have you mentioned this to your wife? Maybe you guys could come up with a system that dictates if someone cooks, the other does dishes?” He looked at me like I wasn’t the brightest bulb in the tool shed and said, “I’ve tried that. It always turns into an argument”.

When I got home that night, and J and I finally settled in, I brought up this discussion. I explained how much it bothered me, and how I really didn’t want us to end up miserable and angry. So I made him promise to never let fear stop him from confronting me about an issue, and in return, I promised to handle it as maturely and calmly as possible. This also works the other way. I need to remember to put aside my worries about pleasing my partner and speak up if I have a genuine issue. As a Codependent, this is high up on the list of struggles for me. I am always hesitant to ask for things, especially when I feel I can accomplish them on my own. However, if I do this time and time again, I will find myself over-burdened and exhausted – 2 things that I am striving hard not to be. I know we won’t be perfect at it, and we will probably fight many times, but I don’t want that to be the end of the story. By setting this expectation of communication now, I think we stand a better chance of paving the way for a healthier partnership.

We all deserve so much more than to be stuck in fearful, resentful relationships that make us bitter towards the people we should be treasuring the most. I think many of us, myself included, forget this because of the way we were brought up or because of the unhealthy mindsets that were modeled to us throughout the years. But here is my PSA for today: stop settling for mediocre relationships (romantic or otherwise). Seriously. Stop it. You really are worth more than that.

So whatever is holding you back from communication or confrontation – whether it be fear of seeming imperfect or needy, the hesitancy to initiate fighting, Codependency, or anything else it might be, put it aside and allow your heart a chance at vulnerability. And no matter how the other person takes it – even if they are angry – love them enough (and love yourself enough) to push through that emotion and come to a place of agreement. Even if it takes 30, 50, 100 tries.

Your future selves will thank you.

Mandela

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11 thoughts on “Communication and Confrontation PSA

  1. Very well said! So proud of you for having the conversation with J! Yes at time it can be uncomfortable but the pain and stress we suffer by avoiding confrontation or asking for help only makes us sicker. Thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It is funny you are bringing this up. Today in the staff room I heard a conversation where two coworkers basically destroyed a third one. The third one is a union representative and she is the only one that did something about our psychopathic boss since she came in earlier this year. Among the two others is a lady that has been there for 4 years and clearly sucking the boss ‘ shoes most of the time. The other only came learlier this year too and has been religiosity saying the people working here are not good enough and blaming the team for the problems . Those two just went on and on. I did not agree an ounce with them, I found the whole process disgusting and degrading. I did not say anything an thought it might have been codependency and cowardice. In the end after reading your post, it comes to me that I don’t care about those people, they are not people I want in my life ever, they are definitely not living up to my standards and I would not even make an effort to have any kind of relationship with them. however it is clear that for someone close, a relationship that matters I would have to be brave enough to talk. Another thing I learned each time I tried in the past is that it never works or nearly with an abusive person or someone with a personality disorder. I tried to speak up so many times with crazy people and got crushed so many times too as a result of it. I thought I would never be able to have a constructive conversation with anyone and I just stopped talking and let myself down all together. Thanks to your post I understand I need to give it a try with normal people. And just never take it personally whatever their reaction is. Thanks so much !

    Liked by 1 person

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