Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).
I am very sorry to know about this overwhelming situation.
Thank you for joining the chat
It seems you are the two opposite extremes in this specific are of your personalities
Just wondering if it's my issue (being too sensitive) or if it's his issue (not really thinking before he speaks, saying little things off the top of his head that en up hurting my feelings...)
That while you are supper sensitive , he does not control nor think about the impact his works could have
I think both extremes are unhealthy
Do you have any advice for us? We seem to continually have this problem.
because both lead to hurt ourselves or to hurt other people
How can we move beyond t his? We need some tools in communicating in a better way with each other.
You would need to come to terms that both need to be mutually empathetic, understanding and supportive, in order to be able to build a healthy , respectful and fulfilling relationship...
since you are together because you care about each other happiness and well-being , right?
Yes, we're committed to each other and to working through this. We just don't really know how to move ahead...
Denying, avoiding or repressing feelings from this serious issue would not help for sure, the same as arguing about who is right here. Both need to work on being consistent with the affection and caring that has got you together in this relatiosnhip, otherwise it would not make any sense for you to be together, right?
You need to start by taking full responsibility for your own feelings, choices, actions and reactions.
How can I work on being less sensitive and less easily offended. I seem to assume his words are meaning to hurt me, when I know he's just not being careful about what he says and he doesn't really mean to hurt me.
From there none would be able to blame the other or to justify being insensitive or inconsistent with your love and commitment by doing something to hurt the other.
Do you have the same problem with other people?
Not really--mostly just him
Has this been an issue affecting your life and relationships in the past, around romance, family, work?
I see, then what do you think he does that causes or triggers these overwhelming feelings if you have not experienced anything like this before?
I don't really know... :(
I'm 22 and this is my first relationship
This is the strategy to work on communicating, coping and supporting each other: When you are not arguing but relaxed, you would take enough time to dialogue about your "core needs and expectations".
We do have miscommunication issues too. I tend to push things down and avoid conflict. This is good advice though.
You would make it clear what you feel and need from each other and how you could support each other to be and feel good, understood, supported and understood. If both of you really care about your relationship, then both will invest of being empathetic and extra careful before saying something, and to work on repairing damage as soon as the other let's you know how he/she feels
You both need to be fully honest and open with each other, otherwise you would be guessing and making assumptions about your feelings, needs, pain and what works fr you, instead of truly working on knowing each other at core levels good enough.
Last night he said something that hurt my feelings (it was kind of dumb--about a shirt I was wearing and I could tell he didn't like it...) but he immediately knew he hurt my feelings and apologizes right away. I was able to let it go and forgive him. So I feel like that was a really good example of how I want things to go.
Avoidance, denial or repression can never help to build a healthy relationship, then if you feel this way y, you need to work on your personal fears and feelings from past experiences leading you to be this way.
As soon as something happens, please address it right away
That's the hard part--why am I this way??? No idea why I'm so sensitive and so easily offended, avoid conflict, etc.
You would let each other know how you feel without blaming or attacking each other
Yes--that's great advice. I think part of the problem is his thinking that it's kind of ridiculous that my feelings get hurt so easily over one little thing he says...he thinks that's kind of silly and that makes me feels mad, sad, upset, hurt...
You would say when you say this or did that, I felt this and that way, I'd prefer you to do or say things this other ways. You will always take responsibility for your own feelings but teach each other what triggered your reaction and clarify if there was any unhealthy intention or not, to correct it
This could come from the way you were raised, where you learned to be this hyper sensitive then too vulnerable to people's words, feelings and actions, feeling hurt.
Do you know what codependency is?
not really--could you explain it in this situation?
When we get hurt and do not know how to effectively cope, we really suffer and become more vulnerable to new situations that could cause or trigger pain, an if we do nor work on healing and develop better coping skills , assertiveness and resilience, we could be exposed to suffer a lot because of taking at a personal level what people think, feel or say, which would be very limited and painful.
Then the person would not only experience fear, sadness, anger and other feelings from the present challenging situation, but all the painful feelings from the past triggered by the present situation.
Oh ok. I'm trying to work on letting little annoyances "go" and not harboring bitterness too. I wonder why it's just him and not necessarily other people??
Codependency is an addictive pattern distorting relationship, where the person becomes needy and excessively affected by words, attitudes and circumstances, depending on what the other person does without having enough psychoemotional autonomy and resilience, then her/his happiness depends on how well the other person does things.
Ah--that sounds a little like me. How does one work through a situation like that??
Perhaps because you allow yourself to be truly vulnerable and open towards him, trusting him and building expectations bout him that you do not have around other people, and when he does not meet those needs and expectations, you feel frustrated. But with codpendency the needs and expectations would be excessive, pushing, needy, leading to constant destructive conflict and a real dependency on the other person
The ideal way to work on yourself and make necessary changes and improvements is through psychotherapy and a support group.
hmmm... lots to think about. Thank you for your help.
The group does complement individual psychotherapy, since it misses the group component so essential to develop these skills.
Any good books you'd recommend as well?
You're very welcome. Please consider reading "Codependent No More" or any other best seller on this topic.
That's a very good book.
Thank you for your help! :)
You could find a lot of information and directory of support groups at coda.org
OK I'll check that out too.
You're very welcome. Please feel free to contact me if you have any other questions or to follow up.
since I am here willing to support to you as possible.
OK have a great day :)
You too! Bye :o)