The other day I had a breakthrough while I was sitting on the couch feeling hurt and frustrated. Granted, I am sure hormones were at play, but I desperately wanted my husband, Darren, to understand why I was feeling the way I was… but I didn’t want to have to tell him!
Darren had made a couple of comments in the day or two leading up to this moment that were hurtful to me, and he had left for work oblivious about the fact that I was even upset—which of course made me even more upset.
In that moment I had a decision: continue to be hurt and upset and hope he figured out why, or actually bring it up to him and explain what the issue was and why I was feeling that way.
Usually I would just hold it in until it went away or I would bottle it up until I exploded. Sometimes, particularly since I am a woman, I want the man in my life to just know things. In my flawed thinking I thought that my husband didn’t care about me unless he knew what I was thinking and feeling without me saying it.
But I discovered just the opposite. I decided to text Darren to explain how I was feeling—making sure it accurately represented my feelings, and wasn’t angry in tone. (Texting is not always the best option of communicating sensitive subjects, but it worked for me in this particular situation.) When I shared my heart and how I was feeling before it got blown out of proportion, Darren responded with kindness and sensitivity. He heard my feelings and apologized for how his comments came across and explained what his intentions had been at the time.
We resolved the issue in the matter of a few minutes. If I had chosen instead to passively hold onto my frustration and just hope that Darren picked up on it, I think it might have snowballed into a much longer argument than it needed to be.
It was a light-bulb moment for me. I can best love my husband by calmly and straightforwardly telling him what’s on my mind and trusting that together we can always work things out. My husband can’t read my mind, but he genuinely wants to understand me, even when I am a confusing mess. If that’s not love, I don’t know what is.