Being Open means being Vulnerable
I haven’t talked or even thought much about my first marriage, but 20 years ago I was married. It only lasted about 2 years or so and it turned into a nightmare of nonstop arguing. I’ve kind of blocked a lot of it out but the intensity of the emotion of a fight with someone I love that much brings that back and makes me have to run and retreat. And every time I do that I feel like I’m emotionally taking one step toward giving up on the whole thing.
In order to be truely close and love someone in here you have to tear down your walls. That’s an awesome feeling and time in a relationship as you circle and dance, each opening up together. I kind of think I’m good at opening up and tearing down my walls with people. But the more thoroughly I tear them down the more vulnerable I become too. It takes a while to truly trust people and feel like they are a part of your heart but it’s an awesome feeling.
99.999% of the time that’s great because they are awesome people and we really love and would do anything for each other. But every once in a great while something goes wrong and if I feel like someone in my heart is attacking me I can get very hurt very easily. It can just be a misunderstanding or saying the wrong thing at the wrong time and it’s amazing how fast all the good things suddenly go out the window. I can face down the biggest scariest demons, assassins or dragons in here but if someone in my heart hurts me, it brings me back to the verbal abuse from my first marriage and makes me want to run away both physically and emotionally as well. Trust me this isn’t easy to say or face but in hind site I’ve kind of done this in the major conflicts I’ve had in here.
The Argument Myth: It’s always better to stay and work things out when you have an argument.
I actually find the opposite is true. Any time I’ve ever felt the urge to run away when an argument is escalating I’ve always looked back and found that it got worse because I stayed when I wanted to leave. That doesn’t mean this is true for everyone, but I find it’s much easier to work out your differences when you’ve had a chance to let the emotion die down. There’s no reason it has to be addressed right then when people are upset about things. Sleep on it, catch your breath, and come back with love later. If you feel like it’s getting out of control call a truce and give it a rest. That’s the best way to stop things from spiraling out of control.