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Recognizing raw spots as they surface in a relationship

24.02.2022 klo 19:59 - Written by Väestöliitto the Family Federation of Finland in collaboration with the Finnish Association of Couple Therapy , psychologist Lotta Heiskanen , Family Federation of Finland
There are certain situations in a relationship when a partner touches a raw spot you have. These may include your partner’s criticism, inattentiveness, or absence. These may include you feeling neglected, ignored, or dismissed.

During an argument or moment of withdrawal and disconnection, do you recognize a specific trigger or moment that makes you feel particularly vulnerable or guarded? For example, “He/she is late”.

What are the worst thoughts that may pop into your mind at a moment like that? What is the worst, most catastrophic thought you have about your partner, yourself, and your relationship? For example, “He/she doesn’t care”, “I’m going to fail”, or “At this rate, we’re going to split up.”

Choose a word from the list below that best describes the softer feelings you have in a situation like this.

During an argument or moment of withdrawal and disconnection, I feel

  • Lonely
  • Worthless
  • Scared
  • Hopeless
  • Panicked
  • Inadequate
  • Ashamed
  • Like a failure
  • Isolated
  • Unimportant
  • Unwanted
  • Dismissed
  • Helpless
  • Hurt
  • Intimidated
  • Rejected
  • Sad
  • Frustrated
  • Confused
  • Disappointed
  • Vulnerable
  • Worried

Do you show that you’re feeling like this to your partner? If not, what feeling do you usually show him or her? Share your answer with your partner.

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