What is Love?
The truth is love doesn’t hurt. It isn’t supposed to hurt. A person who doesn’t know how to love, hurts others. Abuse, rejection, loneliness and losing someone hurts, but never love. Love takes away our pain. It feels good and you know when it’s right. Love is kind and love is compassionate.
Letting someone know that they have hurt you may not be easy. Men can have a harder time with this, because they’ve been encouraged to not give into their feelings and may try to ignore idiotic comments. Sometimes, however, that just isn’t possible so before you challenge, check in with yourself and see if it’s worth the effort. If you do, you’ll want to mention what happened and how it made you feel before the offending party forgets it ever happened.
Confronting someone who has hurt you can be a challenging for a lot of people. We become frightened that our intention to stop the hurt will be misunderstood and we will look like a fool. We may also fear that even a gentle confrontation may push our colleague away or turn a friend into an enemy. Hesitation is understandable, but something needs to be said, or the problem may continue.
Saying to another “When you said **********, you hurt my feelings, please don’t do that again,” is absolutely fine. It’s just difficult to actually say it sometimes. Fear of being hurt further, or being embarrassed that you are feeling emotional, can keep you from protecting yourself. However, protecting yourself is necessary, especially if the problem persists. Ask the person if you could have a word in private. Keep it simple - a fact then how it left you feeling. You may not have to mention not to do it again. Remember we are not going down a blame route.
After you have expressed your feelings, ideally what you need is for the other person to acknowledge what you’ve said and agree to respect your wishes. Once you’ve received that acknowledgment, then you have to wait and see what happens.
Avoidance may seem like another strategy, but it rarely solves the problem. if it is a business or personal relationship with the person who has offended you, avoiding them will be difficult. Ending the relationship is always an option, but it may well be an overreaction and make any relationship even more challenging.
Most people understand when they have crossed the line and are willing to pull back once they understand their transgression. If that doesn’t happen, you may need to be the one who withdraws, even partially, so you don’t have to deal with the negativity.
Boundaries are essential. Healthy self esteem means calling out those who are disrespectful. Modelling how to be boundaried and respecting ourselves helps our young people develop their own self worth.