When your partner is upset, they may not share everything they’re feeling all at once.
They may not have a great sense of what’s going on for them, or they may not want to overwhelm you.
Think of your partner’s emotions like a train, with some feelings getting off at every station.
The next time they’re upset, try creating the space to show them you’re there for the whole ride by asking, “Is there anything else you’re feeling?”
Then hear them out.
Remember, it’s not your objective to get to the “last stop.” Just stay curious and see that every feeling leaves the train safely and acknowledged.
It may be a short trip or a long one, but hearing your partner’s experience completely can make sure nothing stays on board and carries into the next ride.
- Stop Trying to Fix Your Partner’s Feelings
- Emotion Coaching Isn’t Just for Children
- Putting Your Feelings Into Words and Asking Open-Ended Questions
The Relationship Minute from The Gottman Institute, dated 15 August 2019. You can sign up here to get it delivered to your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday morning.