Partners often feel in relationship that some of their needs are not met. This can make them feel frustrated, sad, lonely and worried. Periods like that are common and normal particularly when couples cope with transitions, life changes and the demanding tasks of raising kids. The danger lies in the ways partners cope with these emotions. The strategies of coping with vulnerability will determine if the relationship will spiral up or down.
How do you ‘do’ vulnerability?
Most likely in one of these two common ways:
Protest – probe, demand, nag, criticise, attack, blame and so on.
Withdraw – avoid, dismiss, numb out, ‘reason’, passive aggressive and so on.
Sadly, these ways may give some temporary relief to your emotional hurt but they do not achieve what you really want: to resolve issues and feel closer to your partner. Ultimately these methods distance your partner further and exacerbate your sense of being vulnerable. You become overly sensitive and you tend to fight about the most trivial things. You approach the next conflict with even poorer trust. Defend-attack is now the name of the game.
You want to find a better way.