Is there someone in your life that you refrain from sharing much of your inner thoughts with because of fear of their reaction?
There was a time in our marriage that my husband walked on eggshells whenever discussing problematic issues with me. I had a tendency to go ballistic. Yeah, I was the bulging eye-ball lady. My head did some spinning and there was an explosion of negative emotion blasting out of my mouth.
Being judgmental and over-reactionary on a consistent basis taught my husband to bottle up his thoughts/emotions or at least not divulge them to me.
Guess how much effective communication happened in our marriage?
It took practice, but I learned to create a safe emotional environment in which to have discussions. I had to ask myself a few questions.
Would I want to share information if I had the fear of getting my face chewed off?
Do I want to be the friend of my husband or the parole officer?
So, I prayed and remembered the golden rule by which all relationships will thrive, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” Luke 6:31.
On the other hand, my husband wasn’t the only one who faced critical reactions. So, we had a sit-down and came up with a few ground rules.
~We are adults who love each other.
~We wish our marriage to thrive with joy.
~We are humans who have failings.
~Neither of us are responsible for the other’s sins.
~We each owned up to our own responsibility to refrain from sin.
~We each owned up to our responsibility to not hurt the other.
~We would try to reverse the initial knee jerk, negative reactions with calm, “Let’s work on this together,” reactions.
Ecclesiastes 7:8-9, “Finishing is better than starting. Patience is better than pride. Don’t be quick-tempered, for anger is the friend of fools.”
Finishing with a cool head is better! Having this discussion meant packing away past hurts. It was committing to a fresh start of sunshine. We would move forward with forgiveness and forgetfulness.
It’s such a blessing to walk on sunshine instead of eggshells.