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Repairing Relationships Damaged by Disappointment

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It’s impossible to form complex relationships with other people and not encounter disappointment. Maybe someone forgot your birthday or anniversary. Or perhaps it’s your partner, who is putting their friends before you. Whatever the case, no matter how big or small the disappointment was, it’s important to learn how to move forward.

Put Yourself in Their Shoes

One way to reconnect with a loved one after a disappointment is through empathy. Reflect on the other person’s circumstances. Empathy can counteract feelings of betrayal and disappointment. In fact, psychologist Guy Winch calls empathy “the antidote to anger and frustration.”

You’re essentially recalling the lesson from kindergarten, when your teacher encouraged you to “walk a mile in someone else’s shoes.” When you frame your loved one’s act in the context of his or her struggles, you might find empathy, which will strengthen you to forgive and move on.

Reach Out to Someone Else

You are too close to the situation after a loved one disappoints you. You are vulnerable to the related
emotions that can hit you like a flood, making you incapable of making good choices and reaching
objective conclusions.

Confide in a trusted friend. Or consider meeting with a psychic or a medium for a reading, either in person or online. They are generally very sympathetic and caring. Use this opportunity to vent your frustrations.

But make sure this communication is a two-way street. Don’t forget to listen to the person you’re confiding in! Because they’re not as invested in the situation as you are, they might be able to give you some helpful insights.

Bridge the Gap

Communication offers the healthiest coping mechanism. Talk to your loved one about how you feel. Whether it’s a result of an unintentional insult or of something more serious, such as infidelity, it takes time to recover from disappointment. You should decide first that you want to save the relationship. Then, try to create a list of steps you need to do to repair it.

But be sure to leave accusatory statements out of the conversation at this point. Try to focus on why you feel the way you do, and how you would like to prevent the problem from occurring again in the future. Spending time together can help relieve pain and can re-establish the foundation of your relationship.

Know Yourself Better

When it comes to feelings, disappointment often has two sides. One side is what the other person did. The other side is how you processed that information. It helps to figure out why you took such offense, especially if it was not serious. This doesn’t mean the disappointment you’re feeling is your fault. It’s simply an opportunity to know yourself better, and learn ways to gain control over your emotions.

For instance, maybe you’re disappointed in your partner, because he or she made a thoughtless comment about your appearance. Perhaps you’ve always struggled with your own self-image, so the remark cut particularly deep. Acknowledging your own feelings can help you figure out how to approach the situation.

In summary, disappointment comes in all strengths and flavors. If you got disappointed by a loved one, take a step back and try to analyze the situation with a clear head. Assuming you believe in the relationship and hope to save it, take a proactive approach that honors your own emotions and repairs the damage with the other person.

 

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