We’ve done our personal introspecting. We know what we want. We’ve calmed down about things that we’re upset about.
What do we do when we continue to struggle with communication roadblocks either in our romantic relationships or in our friendships? Do we get frustrated, blame ourselves, and quit trying to build these new healthy habits, or do we persevere somehow?
Well, it’s likely that you already know my vote is for continuing to work, but that isn’t always the best solution. Despite my belief that the only way to make relationships work is to get up every morning and decide to continue working on them, there are some times that might not be the healthiest path for us.
We can do our best to be open and honest with people and still not receive those things back. Perhaps they don’t know how to share in these ways. This sort of communication takes trust and work. It is rarely an overnight process. We have to share a little, feel safe, then continue to expand our sharing as the trust grows. Knowing it is safe to share those feelings is incredibly important.
We have some advantages. By practicing communication skills with our kinks and in negotiations, we are laying the groundwork to translate those behaviors elsewhere. We have to put in the effort to level up that skill set.
Not everyone can build those skills with everyone else. Some relationships are unhealthy. Some people are incompatible. Rather than lifting one another to greater heights, often they bring out the darker qualities in each other. If attempts at communication are constantly being ignored, if people are keeping score, if one always feels as though they are apologizing, sometimes it takes more than one person making a decision to communicate. There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking outside help and resources.
Perhaps that help may come in the form of books written by professionals who understand how to rebuild fractured relationships. Perhaps it may come in the form of professionals themselves. Either way, seeking out help is never anything to be ashamed of. Most of us weren’t raised with the skills to effectively and honestly communicate with our partners no matter how good our parents’ relationships were. Even if those relationships are / were amazing, it is likely that the heavy lifting of their communication did not happen in such a way that it was passed on to their children naturally.
We all have to fight for it, to learn it for ourselves. Just because we practice those skills (and I say practice rather than master, as we all have our moments when we are imperfectly human) does not mean that others are equipped to communicate with us that way in return.
Most of us are preprogrammed to be cautious about sharing our feelings. We see that vulnerability as frightening, and something to avoid. It often takes a lot for us to open up. We are often wearing masks which cover our real thoughts and emotions. When we are rejected with those masks on we think perhaps it won’t hurt as much. The rejection was not really for us.
By taking off those masks and allowing ourselves to shine brightly for the world to see, we make it a better place. We strip away the fear and share our stories and experiences. Others can learn from us. We offer our vulnerability to the people around us and are rewarded by being seen as strong. We are lifted up for the gift of truth, as it is a rare gift, indeed.
Unfortunately, sometimes our attempts at nurturing fall on fields which lie fallow. Barren ground has no nourishment, and a relationship which has no healthy communication brings pain. Sometimes no other solution can be found and we have to make the difficult decisions to walk away from people who hurt us too much.
About the Author
Christmas bunny has been exploring kink since she was legal to do so. Her serious writing started in college, where she accidently got some of her papers published in educational journals. She has recently expanded her writing to include her kink journey. She began writing in the physical realm, but shed some of her inhibitions and began sharing those entries with others. She now keeps an active blog of her personal growth and her relationship with her Master / Daddy Dominant and writes helpful educational posts on a variety of subjects.