Not everyone is a natural-born sharer. Good news! You can learn how to talk about your feelings in a relationship and be comfortable with it.
Whether you are a closed book or a blabbermouth, learning how to talk about your feelings in a relationship can feel so vulnerable. The worst part is that we can’t explain that either. Your tongue gets tied, you sweat, or you just clam up and can’t say a thing.
First things first, this is all normal. So many people struggle to talk about their feelings in a relationship. You are not alone in this. Odds are your partner has dealt with the same thing.
Even the most forthcoming of us can struggle to share our feelings when we’re in a relationship. There is a lot of courage and strength needed to be open and honest with how you feel. It can be scary to share such intimate feelings with anyone, especially the person you’re closest with.
But, learning how to talk about your feelings in a relationship does not have to come naturally. You can learn how to talk about your feelings in a relationship with some baby steps. [Read: Easy communication exercises to be a better lover and partner]
How to talk about your feelings in a relationship when you never have
First of all, I want to say, good for you. Just by looking for this article and making it this far you are trying, and that is already a big step in the right direction. It isn’t easy to admit you’re having trouble with something, especially something so delicate, but you did it.
And now that you did, you can learn the next steps to learn how to talk about your feelings in a relationship even if you never have before.
Opening up, especially for the first time, can feel immensely foreign. Letting someone into your deepest emotions is a vulnerable thing. By letting someone know that, you are giving them a special glimpse into a part of you that few people may see. [Read: What does it mean to be vulnerable? 13 ways you can open up to each other]
But, instead of thinking of it as a risk, try to think of it as a benefit. By releasing your feelings to the person you’re in a relationship with, you are growing that partnership. You are gaining someone you can confide in and trust. You are being courageous.
Yes, the first time you talk about your feelings in a relationship, you will be nervous. You might hesitate, stumble over your words, or sweat profusely, but that is okay. Didn’t someone once say nothing worth doing is easy? Or something like that?
You don’t need to sit down and say I’m going to share my feelings with you. I know it is hard to let something that feels so off to you flow naturally, but you can do it.
Next time you are enjoying your time together and are feeling love, appreciation, sadness or even feelings about something else in your life just say it. Pull the words out of yourself like ripping off a Band-Aid.
It will feel like a release of so much tension you’ve been holding onto. [Read: How to be emotionally available so you can actually feel love]
How to talk about your feelings in a relationship when you’ve been hurt
Learning how to talk about your feelings in a relationship when you never have is full of fear of the unknown, but doing it when you’ve been hurt is even more of a struggle.
You have opened up before and been burned. It is human nature to preserve oneself. You’ve been hurt by someone you let yourself be vulnerable with and you come to expect that in the future.
I know rationality tells you that not everyone is the same and that you need to take a risk to feel the reward of shared love, but it’s not good at convincing someone who has been so irrationally hurt.
And to you, I would not say to release your feelings so abruptly and enjoy the feeling that comes with it, because for you the feeling will likely be dread that that pain will come again. [Read: How opening up to people can give you a much better life]
Instead, take your time. In a relationship, let your partner know you have been hurt so talking about your feelings is not something you feel comfortable with yet. Ask them to be patient with you and take baby steps to get there.
First, talk about your relationship in more practical terms. Talk about your journey together so far. How has that made you feel?
Maybe even share your feelings with someone you do trust just to see how letting them out feels. If you can’t do that, write down your feelings. Just let it all out unfiltered. That will help you build up to sharing them with your partner.
And as you slowly offer more and more vulnerability to your partner, and they continue to earn your trust you will feel more secure and safe sharing even more. [Read: How to stop yourself from overthinking in your relationship]
How to talk about your feelings in a relationship and be comfortable with it
There is a big difference between learning how to talk about your feelings in a relationship and actually feeling comfortable doing so. And I have some news. You may never feel 100% comfortable with it. But, that is okay.
It is okay not to feel comfortable with everything. If we felt comfortable with everything we did, we would never achieve anything. We would never move out of our parents’ house or get a new job or travel.
I am a huge sharer. I am brutally honest with my emotions and never hold back. Even someone as open to talking about her feelings as I am is scared doing it. I know from experience that there is always a chance I’ll get hurt. It is always a risk to open your heart to someone. [Read: 41 conversation starters for couples who want to get serious]
Whether you are talking about your feelings in a romantic relationship, familial one, or even a friendship, you open yourself up to a gamble. But, that is okay.
I am not going to tell you that you cannot have a reward without a risk even though it is true. What I am going to tell you is that it gets easier with practice and with trust.
The more you open up, the more the trust builds. And as that trust builds, you feel more comfortable opening up and talking about your feelings.
And eventually, even though it scares you, you won’t hesitate to share your feelings in a relationship because you know how it makes you and your partner closer. You know that sharing your truth is necessary to live an honest and happy life.
You’ll learn that you are your most comfortable when you are 100% yourself and sharing all your real feelings. Eventually, you will wonder why you haven’t been doing this all along.
It can be hazardous to your emotional and even physical well-being to hold back your feelings, especially in a relationship. It can cause stress and tension that lead to insomnia, illness, and even physical pain in some cases.
But, by working on your communication and trust within your relationship, you can feel exposed and happy about it.
Learning how to talk about your feelings in a relationship takes time, patience, and trust. But with all of that, you can share your emotions in a relationship and feel damn good about it too.