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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Why We Upset Loved Ones Without Meaning To


There are times when we upset, the one we truly love,

Times when we wonder, why we push and shove,

For their love is ours, and it’s not to be abused.

When we hurt those closest to us,

We really do betray an intimate kind of trust,

And they reel against it in a state that is confused.

When we understand it’s something within us that’s unreconciled,

We may challenge ourselves where we are defiled,

When we have corrected ourselves, then we may be excused.

***

Transference may sound like a fancy psychological phenomena, but it really is very simple. We may upset those closest to us, because we can get away with it. But it is also because we don’t recognise some of the underlying issues behind our words and actions.

As an example of this, having recently snapped at my wife, I explored what I had just been thinking about. I wasn’t upset with her, or with what she was communicating, I had just been interrupted, and I’d only then been thinking about something quite sombre. She wasn’t to know this, of course. She would have no idea that something else completely unrelated was, for that moment, bothering me. She just happened to be in the firing line.

That is how we upset people – those we love – more often than not.

We may not even recognise that it is issues and concerns and anxieties that are just below the surface. We therefore transfer our fear, disappointment, and worry onto the other person, when they have no idea what perplexes us.

This is no excuse for us, of course. But it is something to be acutely aware of. We need to nurture an awareness from within us of what we just said and why we just said it. We need to explore these situations in order to root out the real reason for problematic communication. If we don’t do this, the one we love has to bear unjust treatment by someone that supposedly loves them. If we believe in the concept of love, we will believe in reconciliation, and we will take the steps to reconcile any problematic communication via apology.

***

We hurt those closest to us because we can get away with it, and because they are there when we face emotional issues. We are usually not angry toward them, personally, but we will transfer our emotions onto them if we are not aware. Awareness – of what exactly it is that upsets us; and taking responsibility – is the key.

© 2014 S. J. Wickham.

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