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Discussion related to living as a Catholic in the single state of life. As long as a topic is being discussed from the perspective of a single Catholic then it will be on-topic.

Tobias and Sarah's story is from the Book of Tobit, and his journey is guided by Saint Raphael.
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The basic question here is whether the expression of unpleasant emotions such as anger, irritation and impatience is important, or at least very helpful, in maintaining any kind of romantic relationship including a marriage.

Rather than asking for answers in the usual form of opinions, I will ask a question whose answers will be evidence for or against the theory that says that feeling safe and free to express negative feelings in an appropriate way is very important factor in the maintenance of a romantic relationship.

The same question is posed both, on the one hand, to those whose marriages were unhappy and ended in divorce, and, on the other hand, to those whose marriages were happy and ended upon the loss of a spouse. The question is, "Did you express unpleasant emotions enough before the marriage so that you entered the marriage feeling free and safe about continuing to do that when needed by the situation?

Note that this is not an attempt to maneuver anyone into revealing private information which he wishes to remain concealed.

I wish not to irritate, but just to irrigate the flowers of love. flower flower flower

Wondering who'll believe that, scratchchin eyebrow mischievous

John

Nov 22nd 2012 new

(Quote) John-184825 said: The basic question here is whether the expression of unpleasant emotions such as anger, irrita...
(Quote) John-184825 said:


The basic question here is whether the expression of unpleasant emotions such as anger, irritation and impatience is important, or at least very helpful, in maintaining any kind of romantic relationship including a marriage...

The same question is posed both, on the one hand, to those whose marriages were unhappy and ended in divorce, and, on the other hand, to those whose marriages were happy and ended upon the loss of a spouse. The question is, "Did you express unpleasant emotions enough before the marriage so that you entered the marriage feeling free and safe about continuing to do that when needed by the situation?

John

--hide--


Being able to express (appropriate) anger, irritation, & such is key to any type of relationship of depth. I had to learn to be able to do this with my parents as an adult when they wanted to keep relating to me like I was a child. The key is doing it in a constructive and non-threatening way. Open communication between 2 people in any kind of relationship is key. Great communication is more important to me than physical appearance. While I need enough of the latter for there to be a spark, I want lots of the former.

When I am next in a relationship I definitely want to see if we as a couple can handle negative emotions as you said. If handled appropriately I don't think "negative" emotions are actually negative --- the kind of communication that happens while working through a situation like that does powerful good things for a relationship. Increased tenderness towards, aware of the needs of, and respect for the other --- and they increased gratitude to have someone who cares enough to listen and change. None of us are perfect and can at times not adequately take the other's feelings and needs in consideration enough and need to be called out on it, for instance.

Nov 22nd 2012 new

(Quote) Eric-114571 said: Being able to express (appropriate) anger, irritation, & such is key to any type of re...
(Quote) Eric-114571 said:



Being able to express (appropriate) anger, irritation, & such is key to any type of relationship of depth. I had to learn to be able to do this with my parents as an adult when they wanted to keep relating to me like I was a child. The key is doing it in a constructive and non-threatening way. Open communication between 2 people in any kind of relationship is key. Great communication is more important to me than physical appearance. While I need enough of the latter for there to be a spark, I want lots of the former.

When I am next in a relationship I definitely want to see if we as a couple can handle negative emotions as you said. If handled appropriately I don't think "negative" emotions are actually negative --- the kind of communication that happens while working through a situation like that does powerful good things for a relationship. Increased tenderness towards, aware of the needs of, and respect for the other --- and they increased gratitude to have someone who cares enough to listen and change. None of us are perfect and can at times not adequately take the other's feelings and needs in consideration enough and need to be called out on it, for instance.

--hide--
I agree. Emotions are not bad, it is what you do with them that can be constructive or destructive.

Nov 22nd 2012 new

There is nothing wrong with expressing emotions. A person should be able to express themselves. Its just how you handle yourself in the situation.

Nov 22nd 2012 new

Maybe I'm just dense, but I can never understand what you're talking about. Can you be more direct?

Nov 22nd 2012 new

(Quote) Eric-114571 said: Being able to express (appropriate) anger, irritation, & such is key to any type of re...
(Quote) Eric-114571 said:



Being able to express (appropriate) anger, irritation, & such is key to any type of relationship of depth. I had to learn to be able to do this with my parents as an adult when they wanted to keep relating to me like I was a child. The key is doing it in a constructive and non-threatening way. Open communication between 2 people in any kind of relationship is key. Great communication is more important to me than physical appearance. While I need enough of the latter for there to be a spark, I want lots of the former.

When I am next in a relationship I definitely want to see if we as a couple can handle negative emotions as you said. If handled appropriately I don't think "negative" emotions are actually negative --- the kind of communication that happens while working through a situation like that does powerful good things for a relationship. Increased tenderness towards, aware of the needs of, and respect for the other --- and they increased gratitude to have someone who cares enough to listen and change. None of us are perfect and can at times not adequately take the other's feelings and needs in consideration enough and need to be called out on it, for instance.

--hide--
Eric,

Thanks for a high-quality answer. I think that you hit a lot of nails on the head.

Regarding the sentence, Being able to express (appropriate) anger, irritation, & such is key to any type of relationship of depth, I liked that you included both any type and depth.

Regarding clause, "If handled appropriately I don't think "negative" emotions are actually negative. I agree that those "negative" feelings can be e positive because they actually reveal truth, in this case truth about feelings. The really negative thing is to conceal all "negative" feelings.

You seem to be saying that, if in the next relationship the woman unleashes some sharp emotions such as irritation, you will not automatically start to roll your eyes in mocking disapproval, but rather say to yourself that is an opportunity (by no means a sure thing) to have a real relationship because you cannot have a real relationship with a "nicer" woman who holds things in even if she does so for seemingly well-intentioned reasons.

I like how you pointed out how real emotion even if unpleasant opens the door to a relationship that grows better and better rather that one that stays just so-so through artificial niceness.

Trying not to be too nice to the sugar and spice, eyepopping

John

Nov 22nd 2012 new

Yes, but then it took us six years to agree to get married, plenty of time to know each other and all our moods.

Nov 22nd 2012 new

(Quote) Kathy-635104 said: Yes, but then it took us six years to agree to get married, plenty of time to know each other and...
(Quote) Kathy-635104 said:

Yes, but then it took us six years to agree to get married, plenty of time to know each other and all our moods.

--hide--
Hi Kathy,

Thanks for participating in this discussion. smile

Without intending to ask any personal questions, I'll ask whether taking the time to find out about each other before marriage was worth the wait? What would you advise others to do to make sure that both, on the one hand, they could express some unpleasant emotions when needed and, on the other hand, they would allow the same to the other party?

Wondering whether I've been inflicting flack on myself by avoiding conflict, scratchchin eyebrow

John

Nov 22nd 2012 new

(Quote) John-184825 said: Hi Kathy, Thanks for participating in this discussion. Without intending to ask any ...
(Quote) John-184825 said:

Hi Kathy,

Thanks for participating in this discussion.

Without intending to ask any personal questions, I'll ask whether taking the time to find out about each other before marriage was worth the wait? What would you advise others to do to make sure that both, on the one hand, they could express some unpleasant emotions when needed and, on the other hand, they would allow the same to the other party?

Wondering whether I've been inflicting flack on myself by avoiding conflict,

John

It was worth it to me, to know without a doubt, what I was getting into. I knew he had a temper. I tend to avoid conflict myself because I prefer harmony. (I'm typing this as both my kids are practicing their trumpets, so it feels a bit ironic, harmonically that is.) I think it is normal and healthy for a relationship to experience some conflict. Hopefully it is less common than the times where you are truly enjoying each other. Knowing your partner and seeing how they deal with those issues is very important. Are you going to work together to come to an agreement or is one of you going to shut down and pretend it never happened? By avoiding it purposefully, you are sort of cheating the other of a chance to show you who they are. I would much rather know what to expect before going into a marriage. But like anything, there are also those times you may not agree, but it isn't worth the battle. My advise is to not stifle too much or the little thing will cause a blowout.

--hide--

Nov 22nd 2012 new

(Quote) John-184825 said: Hi Kathy, Thanks for participating in this discussion. Without intending to ask any ...
(Quote) John-184825 said:

Hi Kathy,

Thanks for participating in this discussion.

Without intending to ask any personal questions, I'll ask whether taking the time to find out about each other before marriage was worth the wait? What would you advise others to do to make sure that both, on the one hand, they could express some unpleasant emotions when needed and, on the other hand, they would allow the same to the other party?

Wondering whether I've been inflicting flack on myself by avoiding conflict,

John

It was worth it to me, to know without a doubt, what I was getting into. I knew he had a temper. I tend to avoid conflict myself because I prefer harmony. (I'm typing this as both my kids are practicing their trumpets, so it feels a bit ironic, harmonically that is.) I think it is normal and healthy for a relationship to experience some conflict. Hopefully it is less common than the times where you are truly enjoying each other. Knowing your partner and seeing how they deal with those issues is very important. Are you going to work together to come to an agreement or is one of you going to shut down and pretend it never happened? By avoiding it purposefully, you are sort of cheating the other of a chance to show you who they are. I would much rather know what to expect before going into a marriage. But like anything, there are also those times you may not agree, but it isn't worth the battle. My advise is to not stifle too much or the littlest thing will cause a blowout. Emotions are healthy if expressed properly.

--hide--

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