Hurt – to cause physical pain or injury. That is the definition but what about hurt that causes emotional pain and injury to your spirit? That is the hurt that I want to talk about. This hurt is something that comes into my life more often than I care to admit. Some days I can see it coming like a train roaring down the tracks with the horn blaring. I like those days because I know to get out of the way and not feel the complete blow but maybe just the wind as it goes past. Most days the hurt comes so unexpectedly and the aftermath lingers longer. The recovery time is longer and I believe that hurt leaves an impression like ticks we scrape onto a wall. The hard part about loving someone who causes that kind of hurt due to mental illness can create confusion. Logically we want to remove ourselves from anyone who causes us this kind of pain but the lines blur with the disease component added. At least it does for me. Does it for you? I would love to know how you handle the hurt. Most of the time I remove myself on a temporary basis and sadly the same form of hurt happens again and again and again. The lesson never being learned and the sincerest of apologies being to ring hollow.
So, my friends, how can we overcome hurt?
Overcoming hurt isn’t easy. It takes patience and time to work through these emotional wounds. However, it is possible and can be done. Here is a four step process you can work through whenever you are feeling hurt:
The moment you are hurt, it’s important to immediately settle yourself down to prevent your emotions from overwhelming you. The best way to do this is to remove yourself from the situation and take some time to calm your emotions and settle your mind. This period of separation will prevent you from jumping to rash conclusions about the situation. Maybe things aren’t as they seem to be. At the very least, this separation will help you to avoid further conflict that could potentially aggravate your emotions and the situation even more.
Now that you are alone, it’s important that you take time to reflect about the events that have transpired. Try to understand what exactly happened, what the person said or did, and also try and gain some insight into your own behavior, reactions and the emotions you are feeling in the moment. Ask yourself:
How did I initially feel about this situation?
What was my initial response to this situation?
Why did I respond in this way?
How am I feeling at this very moment?
Why am I feeling this way?
These questions will help you pinpoint what exactly is happening on the surface. However, your hurt feelings might actually go a little deeper. Maybe your feelings of hurt have nothing to do with this moment but rather stem back to a culmination of events that have taken place over a period of time. Ask yourself:
What is really causing my feelings of hurt?
Do these feelings of hurt go beyond these events?
What could be the underlying cause of my feelings?
What important insights do I gain from this analysis?
If you realize that your feelings of hurt do not necessarily stem from this particular situation, then you have some work to do on a personal level to resolve past feelings that are actually causing you pain. For this very reason it’s important that you take under consideration your past hurts throughout this period of self-reflection.
Let’s now reflect upon and consider the other person’s perspective of the situation and why they did what they did. Ask yourself:
What was the other person trying to do?
Why did they do or say these things?
What are they trying to gain from this situation?
Did they just hurt me, or did they also hurt other people as well?
What could have triggered their words and/or behavior? Was it stress?
Now take some time to consider possible misunderstandings and maybe even the other person’s real intentions. Could it be possible that your assumptions about the other person’s intentions might be in error? Ask yourself:
Did they hurt me intentionally?
Am I potentially misreading this person’s intentions?
What could their real intentions be in this situation?
Do they have my best interests at heart?
What if there is a misunderstanding here?
What information will I need from the other person to clarify this situation?
It’s possible that the other person got caught up in the heat of the moment and said or did things they didn’t mean. Likewise, it’s also possible that they are in pain themselves. They are hurting, and unfortunately directing this energy onto you. This should therefore indicate that their words and actions have absolutely nothing to do with you, but rather all to do with their own personal insecurities. Ask yourself:
Could they be hurting in some way?
What could be the source of their pain?
How could I best get them to open up and talk about their feelings?
Finally, it’s important that you re-evaluate your expectations of the circumstances and the people involved. Ask yourself:
What did I expect should have happened in this situation?
What did I expect the other person should have done?
Are my expectations realistic? Are they helpful?
What if I had different expectations? How would that help?
You’re feeling hurt because in one way or another your expectations weren’t realized. There’s nothing wrong with that, however it certainly doesn’t help if you have a set of unrealistic expectations that will rarely if ever be satisfied. In such instances you need to work through your expectations and bring them back to reality, otherwise it’s likely you’re always going to end up hurt.
Having spent some time reflecting upon the situation, it’s now your moment to approach the other person in order to resolve your feelings of hurt and maybe even clarify possible misunderstandings. Just maybe you’re seeing things all wrong and completely misinterpreting events and circumstances. Just be open to the possibilities, and willing to fully understand the other person’s point of view and true intentions.
When approaching the other person about this situation, it’s important to always think before you speak. Don’t say things that you will regret later on. Have a good idea of what you will say in advance, and talk about these things openly and graciously by acknowledging your feelings, acknowledging the other person’s feelings, while discussing the events that transpired. It’s of course paramount that you do not become argumentative or aggressive. It’s important that you do not blame, judge or accuse the other person of doing or not doing something. Instead, be assertive, yet humble and focused on gaining clarification about the circumstances. The more information you have, the better insights you will gather.
Finally, don’t force the other person to make an apology. This will rarely work, and if it does, it won’t be genuine and is likely to create more friction between the two of you. Instead, talk things through and help the other person see things through your eyes. If throughout this process the other person apologizes, then accept their apology. You don’t have to forgive them, but accept that they are at the very least trying to right their wrongs.
You should now have all the information you need to make a decision to either move past these circumstances and forgive the other person, or to let go of your relationship, or simply distance yourself from the other person. The decision you make will depend entirely on how much insight you gained from Step Three of this process. However, no matter what you choose to do, it’s important that you accept what has happened and allow your feelings of hurt fade away.
Taken from IQMartix.com