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Ask CounselorJules Your Own Question

CounselorJules, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 572
Experience:  Licensed Professional Counselor
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So my girl friend said something that bothered me from my past

Customer Question

So my girl friend said something that bothered me from my past and she is upset that it still bothers me what should I do how do I get us back on the same ground like when we first dating
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
Good afternoon! Hopefully I will be able to help you today! Do you mind sharing a bit more information specifically about the situation so that I can provide you with a thorough answer?But initially, without knowing exactly what she said or brought up, I recognize that she must continue to feel insecure about whatever was in your past. It sounds like her bringing it up was actually her way of attempting to talk to you about it. Is this something that you guys have shared with one another in full detail? Maybe it is something that through honest communication you can work through. It is important to remember that when someone criticizes us or brings up something in anger, that there could be an unmet emotional need that requires being addressed. Are you familiar with the Five Love Languages? I think it is important for partners to understand each others "language of love" so that we can express and communicate with one another effectively. I will send some information about these. The 5 Love Languages® What if you could say or do just the right thing guaranteed to make that special someone feel loved? The secret is learning the right love language! Millions of couples have learned the simple way to express their feelings and bring joy back into marriage: The 5 Love Languages, Dr. Gary Chapman’s New York Times bestseller. #1: Words of AffirmationActions don’t always speak louder than words. If this is your love language, unsolicited compliments mean the world to you. Hearing the words, "I love you," are important—hearing the reasons behind that love sends your spirits skyward. Insults can leave you shattered and are not easily forgotten. #2: Quality TimeFor those whose love language is spoken with Quality Time, nothing says, "I love you," like full, undivided attention. Being there for this type of person is critical, but really being there—with the TV off, fork and knife down, and all chores and tasks on standby—makes your significant other feel truly special and loved. Distractions, postponed dates, or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful. #3: Receiving GiftsDon’t mistake this love language for materialism; the receiver of gifts thrives on the love, thoughtfulness, and effort behind the gift. If you speak this language, the perfect gift or gesture shows that you are known, you are cared for, and you are prized above whatever was sacrificed to bring the gift to you. A missed birthday, anniversary, or a hasty, thoughtless gift would be disastrous—so would the absence of everyday gestures. #4: Acts of ServiceCan vacuuming the floors really be an expression of love? Absolutely! Anything you do to ease the burden of responsibilities weighing on an "Acts of Service" person will speak volumes. The words he or she most want to hear: "Let me do that for you." Laziness, broken commitments, and making more work for them tell speakers of this language their feelings don’t matter. #5: Physical TouchThis language isn’t all about the bedroom. A person whose primary language is Physical Touch is, not surprisingly, very touchy. Hugs, pats on the back, holding hands, and thoughtful touches on the arm, shoulder, or face—they can all be ways to show excitement, concern, care, and love. Physical presence and accessibility are crucial, while neglect or abuse can be unforgivable and destructive.I suggest trying to talk to her with an approach something like this, " I understand that something about my past really affects you. I apologize for how this action has made you feel. I wish that I could move beyond that chapter of my life as well, but I can't if we talk about it all of the time or I feel like it is something that I am continuing to be judged for. Is there something that I can do to assure you that this situation does not affect us. If there are questions, I want to be able to process these with you, but I want to do this with empathy between us, not judgment. I want us to get back on the same page with trust and understanding. I know that as relationships progress and people become closer, sometimes we also become guarded because we are scared. I want you to feel secure and safe with me. If there is something we can do together to move beyond it, please help me to understand what you feel that you need." What do you think? :)
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
No she did not bring it up out of anger she kind of said it jokingly and I said common you know that bothers me and it's been down hill ever since I need to know what to say to get over this speed hump and to prove to her it doesn't bother me and that I'm over it
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
Well, sometimes there is the use of a defense mechanism called "sublimation" and it is where we use humor to mask our feelings. It sounds like she is aware that you don't like for her to bring it up, and it does tend to bother you.
You won't be able to say anything to her that makes it better if it really isn't okay. Does that make sense? Like don't put a band aide on something if you need a few stitches? Maybe you guys need to talk about it more. Maybe ask her why she brought it up and share with her that it just either embarrassed you, but now that you recognize her intentions were not to be hurtful or demeaning, that you would like to move past it.
You could say, "I really do understand that maybe you were joking about what you said. I really don't think about the past that much and when I think about our relationship, I don't even process that much of what happened before us. I know it was said in jest, but I don't want the past to be a factor in our future." Then I would take inventory of your actions. Like that saying "actions speak more loudly than words." Monitor your body language, tone, expression, and your approach. Be silly with her, flirt, try some form of physical intimacy to show her that you have moved on.
What do you think?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
How do I tell her I am moving on from my past so her and I can continue our relationship I can't loose her she means the world to me
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
I think just like you said it to me.... "I wanted to tell you that I am moving beyond the past. I am in love with you. I am focusing on our future and you mean the world to me. I know that I was hurt by what you said and that I was reactive, but our present and future is much more to me than what my past ever was. You mean the world to me and I don't want to lose you."
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
Do you feel that something of that nature would capture what you most want to express?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Now she told me she was testing me and I am beyond hurt for that I asked her to help me through a low point and she says that is a joke and unfair now what
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
It sounds like a matter of respect. It sounds like she may not be aware of how her actions really affect you, or she minimizes the effect of them. How did you respond to what she said? If you haven't yet responded, I would wait. I would attempt not to be reactive, and focus more on what you want her to understand. What do you feel that would be?
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
You can tell people they hurt you by being assertive.This means communicating that what they did was hurtful to you while preserving their thoughts and feelings at the same time. You are not trying to hurt them, you are only trying to communicate what they Something like this. "______(name), when you did ______(action, words spoken, behavior) it made me feel _______. I want to know why you did that. I am having a hard time understanding why you did it that way. Be calm, but show how you feel. If the feeling is intense, step away from the situation. You have the right to do this, and your reputation depends on it. Its fine to show your emotions, this isn't a chess match or war. You want them to see the emotion they evoked in you.****Red Flags*****If the person belittles you, blows it off like nothing, or tries to make you look bad when you confront them, please reconsider their relationship to you. You have the right to be in a healthy relationship where you actually feel good to be around the other person.The whole point of all of this is to first show self-respect. You want to be respected in your relationship(s) right?! Second off, you want to respect the rights of others.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
If you were in my situation how would you want the significant other so respond and try to repair things
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
Well, I am not fully aware of the details, but I think that what I would most want from my partner is an understanding of their own response and a sense of ownership, but also something solution focused.In the clinic I teach skills for "Non-violent Communication." The easiest way for me to describe it is positive, negative, positive. State what you feel are the positives about the relationship, identify the actions you would like to rectify, and then follow up with how you can do this together to make the relationship stronger.If I were you, I would say, "you know how much I care about you. I am not in full understanding why something embarrassing from my past would be used as a joke or to test me, but I did find it hurtful. I want to move beyond that and I understand that you were not meaning to intentionally hurt me, but I want to be transparent, so I am telling you that it did upset me. I really want to move on from it though, so I want to make an effort to focus more on what we want rather than what we don't."
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
Just wanted to follow up, I want to make sure that I am being helpful and not being redundant..... How can i most provide you with a thorough answer?
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 6 months ago.
I just wanted to check back in with you and find out if there was any more information that I can provide that may be helpful to you. If you were satisfied with the answer, please let me know via a positive rating or positive feedback. I am available if you need any more services. Thank you! jules

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