February 7th, 2012

Sea dragon

Communication problems

I hate it when someone says something to you that's meant to express a deep truth to them but due to a clumsiness of phrasing they've said it in a way that makes you feel like shit.

I also hate it when you point out something not true with what they've said that they often get mad at you for "not listening to them." (IE "I'm sure you don't really think no one has ever done X with you when I was just doing X with you yesterday/last month").

I have now had to deal with two people who do this to me and in both cases they treat me like I'm a complete cretin for not listening to them, even though what's come out of their mouths is incredibly wounding. In one case I was told specifically it was more important for me to help them figure out what they wanted to say rather that to point out that I was now hurt and didn't really want to carry on the conversation anymore. In my mind, if you assume both parties like and trust each other, a simple, "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to hurt your feelings," goes a long way to restore trust and keep the open communication going. Instead I feel like I've been told that I just need to not be hurt, but once I'm hurt I don't want to have "open" communication anymore, especially if the communication is about things like things you do to hurt your partner's feeling!