How To Fix Toxic Resentment In Marriage: 7 Practical Steps

4. Be Sensitive To Their Triggers

When we turn to our partner with a complaint or request about our needs, one of the most common responses is defensiveness or turning away.

Is it because they’re an asshole?

Look, it’s certainly possible. But in the vast majority of relationships there’s a much more compassionate reason:

They’re triggered.

Something you’ve said has brought up their insecurities and unresolved emotional wounds.

If you make a request that you’d like to spend more time together, they hear:

“You’re not doing enough. You’re a failure. ”

When you tell them you feel unhappy in your marriage, they hear:

“You don’t make me happy because you’re not good enough for me.”

That’s why resentment breeds resentment. When you try to communicate about your hurts, it hurts your partner. They react, which hurts you more. It’s a toxic cycle that can be difficult to break.

But if you can notice when your partner gets defensive and responds with empathy – reassuring their triggers and insecurities – you set yourself up for a much more productive conversation.

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