August 28, 2017
Let’s Talk: Vulnerability
We all get into these patterns of disconnection. Underneath our defensive strategies, we are just feeling hurt and afraid as humans. This is universal in all human nature. These softer and deeper feelings can take two forms, either fearing abandonment, or fearing rejection.
Abandonment might sound like: I’m alone, uncared for, unseen, I don’t get responded to.
Rejection might sound like: I’m criticized, I’m inadequate, I’m failing, I’m unwanted.
When we are hurt and fearful at such a deep level, it’s very difficult to reach out and admit this. To actually share this with one another, takes tremendous courage. Of course, when we are feeling abandoned or rejected, we don’t want to take a risk and then be dropped even more.
It feels counterintuitive to give this advice, but it’s one of those universal truths. If you take the risk and share these deeper, submerged feelings, most often, you will get a supportive response. The Latin word for vulnerability means to wound. So to open yourself up in this way, instead of putting on your armor, means you open yourself up to getting hurt. Your partner will see this, and will see the tremendous gift you are giving them in digging up these difficult-to-reveal feelings, and offering them open hands, open heart, white flag, to them in the process.