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Dealing with friends & loved ones when they do or say hurtful or unhelpful things

Elizabeth CP
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

This thread is about dealing with those situations when friends or familydo or say something which triggers negative reactions in us. This is not about dealing with bullies, abusers or other toxic people. With toxic people we need to stay away so it is a different situation.

My example: Yesterday we were discussing a proposed camping hiking trip. My husband suggested we get up early & head off on the hike by 7am & implied this would be a good time to set off each day. This comment set off a very negative reaction. I replied that he was being very unfair as it was putting too much pressure on me. Even worse was the internal dialogue feeling I was failing in meeting my husband's wishes and feeling useless because I knew I wouldn't cope with the pressure. When we were younger & both fit & well holidays were crammed to get the maximum out of each day. Now I am left doing all the planning, driving, navigating, packing, cooking cleaning & watching out for my husband to ensure his safety as he is blind & has other serious health issues. He wants to do as much as possible before he gets worse & can't get out. Having to do everything means I get tired & I can't afford to push myself too far otherwise I will fall in a heap.

My question is what are some strategies to cope with those situations like this one were a loved one says something which really upsets you even though they didn't mean to.

Perhaps others could share their situations so we can learn from each others ideas

13 Replies 13

Hi Elizabeth,

No need to feel sorry for me. I appreciate what I do have and am so used to buying in second hand shops that I quite enjoy exploring the stores and being creative with what I do find.

My husband doesn't see the hypocrisy. Even when I point it out politely he says he still has a right to do what he wants. No point bashing my head against a brick wall!

My parents have done it tough their whole lives. My Dad still saves and scrimps and drives my Mum nuts at times. Then he will spend money on the darndest things that make no sense at all to anyone else.

Elizabeth, maybe you could put some money aside each week in an envelope, then use that to go out and buy yourself something special. I might do the same thing myself!


Hi Quirkywords,

You asked if I ever feel resentful towards my husband and the answer is yes. I try to address those feelings. Sometimes I try to discuss matters with him at times that is not at all beneficial.

The thing for me is to acknowledge the resentment and do something about it so it does not build up and compound. My depression is bad enough at present let alone adding resentment and bitterness.

In some ways I am very fortunate as I am happy and pleased with little things in life. I enjoy going to a movie, out to dinner, having a picnic, being with family and friends, going to the beach and so on.

For my husband it takes an overseas holiday for him to be happy and satisfied with life. I am so much more blessed than he is in that respect. Just sitting out watching the stars fills me with amazement. My husband has to see the Eifel Tower to feel the same.

Guess it is all perspective.

Hope your partner's leg is healing okay.

Cheers from Dools

Dools You are an inspiration. You seem to have learnt to pick your battles & accept even when things aren't ideal. I was also brought up in a family with little money but plenty of love. I thought of your suggestion of saving up for something special. I find it hard to feel I deserve anything. I don't have to worry about my husband complaining if I buy something.

Hi Elizabeth,

I'm hoping you are able to save up, and you are able to purchase something because you really like it and it feels good on you (if you buy clothes.)

I hope the purchase makes you feel special and like you deserve it and you wear it with happiness.

Cheers again, from Dools