This week's guest blog is from Karen J. Helfrich, LCSW-C, ... Learn more about her here.
Recently, a student asked me, “Why, when a girl is angry at you, does she say she’s fine when really, she’s angry?” I love this question. It ultimately speaks to our deep longing for connection with each other and the pain involved when there is a connection challenge, often in the form of unmet expectations.
Any couple is likely to stumble when expectations go unmet. We are likely to feel angry, terribly wronged, and even enraged. One of the other students replied, “Because he should know why I’m angry!” Yes! I love this!
It can feel very vulnerable to explain why we are angry. We are angry because we are hurt. What if the other person still does not understand? This adds injury to insult. Anger feels safer. How can couples navigate this difficult terrain?