My kids were with their grandparents and I was spending time with my husband.
We were relaxed and talking and everything felt perfect until he mentioned the upcoming marriage of someone that is close to us.
At some point I heard him say that if he were that age again he would probably not choose to get married and have kids. I was shocked and felt hurt, and we started arguing.
We could not find common ground and I was becoming more and more upset. It felt to me like he was rejecting me and our kids, so I reached out to one of my Listening Partners for an emergency listening time.
Luckily, she was available, and as she listened to me, I started crying and raging about what my husband had said, expressing all of my rage and anger.
As those feelings faded I was left with just the feeling of being unwanted. I talked and cried further, and as I did I linked this to how I felt when I was a child.
My parents had divorced and I never knew my father, by his choice.
As this realisation hit, I cried some more.
The clouds cleared, and I felt so much better.
After the call, I talked again with my husband. Now I found I was finally ready to understand what he actually wanted to say: That most people 35 or older are less likely to get married and have kids because they so value their comfortable lives.
I realized as we talked, that his need for time for himself and for time together for us as a couple had not been met and that he felt frustrated. With this knowledge, I made the decision to plan for more couple time.
We enjoyed the rest of the day without the children instead of fighting more and wasting the day.
My Listening Partnership had helped me heal a little from some of my old wounds, clearing away the feelings that kept me from thinking straight. Now, I better understand what we needed as a couple, it saved our day.
Listening Partnerships give parents the space they need to explore old hurts and triggers that bring on anger, clouded thinking or mis-communication. They are one of Hand in Hand parenting's five listening tools and an essential part of parental self-care.
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