Invalidation of one’s partner can occur over the simplest of issues.
Perhaps you always feel a little cold, even when the weather is warm, but he has a fast metabolism and cannot understand your discomfort. Maybe he’ll say things to the effect that there is something wrong with you and nobody else is feeling cold.
Immediately you will feel uncomfortable, perhaps without knowing why. The reason is that your observation has been nullified and made pointless. This is exasperating, to say the least. Someone who does not have a strong self-esteem may indeed start feeling there is something wrong with them. One can feel shamed and even stung by one’s partner’s presumption of superiority.
This is how arguments start and it can all be prevented.
Constant inputs along these lines will most probably result in the couple growing apart, but there are ways to address this kind of problem before it escalates.
When you validate your partner, you recognize that his/her thoughts, beliefs and perspectives are valid and true, regardless of whether you share his/her view or even understand it.
Instead of jumping to the conclusion that your partner’s opinion is invalid, you can find out more and investigate the issue before dismissing something that is clearly upsetting him/her.
Before you can validate one another effectively, you need to acknowledge that you and your partner do experience things differently.
Do not assume he/she thinks the way you do. Start asking what he/she thinks, wants and feels and honour those confessions.
Even if you don’t agree, try to understand his/her point of view and use validating phrases like “I can see how that felt to you.”
Then you no longer need to defend yourselves and get into arguments about who was right and who was wrong.
Don’t get sucked into these kind of situations and nip them in the bud. Start defending each other’s truths instead of attacking them.
Make a habit of dealing with invalidation in this way and soon it will become a thing of the past.
© 2020 Marilyn Welch. All rights reserved.
Owner of Perfect Strangers
Marilyn Welch is the owner of Perfect Strangers Introduction Society for Professionals and in the last year, many of the clients who joined Perfect Strangers met someone special, often within a very few short months. Would you love to meet your soulmate? If you fit our niche market and feel that you would like to work with me, register today.