"I needed to get it. And even more importantly, he needed to feel like I really got what he's experiencing. So I listened. I breathed deeply, I looked him in the eyes and tried to imagine what he was saying and forced myself to temporarily set aside my deep desire for him to understand my side."
"Forgiveness is the process by which love and trust are reestablished in relationships. Forgiveness doesn't consist of simple platitudes or superficial statements that are expected to make the past go away. It is not forgetting about serious damage or letting someone off who caused hurt without taking responsibility. It is not about subjecting yourself to an untrustworthy or unloving person who will just hurt you all over again. What forgiveness is about is the coming together of at least two people, after there has been severe damage or hurt in their relationship, to rewrite the story of love and trust in a responsible way that will make their relationship and families stronger and healthier."
Forgiving the Devil, by Terry Hargrave
Laughed and felt inspired watching this interview with Lake Bell, talking about not only her film, but how her perspective on marriage has evolved. "Coming from a person who did not believe in the institution, I actually see it (marriage) as the badass, brave way to go forth"
For the moments when we're feeling timid or afraid:
"It is not the critic who counts;
not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.
The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena,
whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood;
who strives valiantly;
who errs and comes short again and again;
who knows great enthusiasms,
the great devotions;
who spends himself in a worthy cause;
who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement,
and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly
so that his place shall never be with those timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."
- Theodore Roosevelt
What are you experiencing that you don't know how to address? Are you experiencing an increase in anxiety and not sure why or what you can do about it? Are you feeling depressed and silently carrying it around by yourself? How is what you're experiencing impacting your relationship and how are your relationships impacting what you're experiencing?
Good relationships that get better over time are those that can acknowledge they don't know everything about how to love their partner well. They are open to critiques, willing to share critiques so their partner isn't in the dark and eager to learn what kind of actions leave their partner feeling loved and understood.
One thing you should know if you are considering looking for a therapist: therapy is work, and the work begins with your search for the right therapist.
While I do hope your holidays are filled with joy, peace, and a sense of connection to those you love, I imagine in everyone's holiday there will be moments that highlight the challenges in our relationships.
Below are a few helpful tips to assist you in navigating this holiday season.