I remember thinking and feeling things just like that. In today’s video, I talk about how the sneaky erosion of safety and trust in relationships might be responsible for your spouse or partner appearing to be unhappy with you, no matter how much good you believe you’re doing.
Safety and trust in relationships isn’t just about not being harmed physically, financially, or even emotionally; or being someone who is sexually faithful and tells the truth. Safety can also be about the idea of reliability. Of sustainability. Of consistency.
In my marriage, my wife learned that she couldn’t trust me. Not because I was a liar or a sneak. But because the math result of our interactions amounted to feeling unheard, misunderstood, neglected, abandoned, disrespected, invalidated.
When she felt bad about something and had to think about how she wanted to approach me about it, what she learned after 12 years was that I would always choose what I believed and felt OVER what she believed and felt any time we disagreed.
She realized that the rest of her life would be spent being told that what she thought was wrong, and what she felt was crazy. That her experiences didn’t make sense. That she was too sensitive, or that it was all in her head. The only thing she could trust was that she would continue to hurt more and more the longer she lived with me, because it always seemed as if I mattered so much more to me than she did.
Check out the video to better understand how and why our bids for connection in our relationships might sometimes be rebuffed or rebuked when our partners lack the requisite amount of safety and trust to feel good about their lives, and the pain they feel from our shared lives.