In an intimate relationship like marriage, the chances of hurting each other are high. Since there are a lot of emotions, feelings, and expectations involved, you are very much vulnerable to get hurt. When you are hurt by your spouse, ideally, you should talk about the issue and get over it with mutual understanding and forgiveness. In reality, there are occasions when you don’t feel like forgiving or forgetting fully, despite communicating your grievances and getting an apology.
Apparently, everything seems OK but deep down in your heart, you keep the grudge. Intentionally and unintentionally you keep on feeding that grudge and gradually it grows. Every time you have an argument or a disagreement that past hurt comes back to haunt your relationship.
Sounds familiar? If yes then it’s a sign that your emotional wound has not fully healed. I want to mention that the hurt need not be caused by a huge mistake by your spouse. Emotional wounds caused by even the little things have the potential to hurt a lot and grow over time if not fully healed at the right time.
How To Let Go Of Past Hurts In Your Marriage
When you have a past hurt in your marriage your present suffers. In order to recover from the hurt and let go of it completely, the following steps are helpful.
Accept The Grudge
The first step, in letting go of the past hurts in your marriage, is to fully accept your emotional state. Do not lie to yourself that you are fine if you are not. Accept that you are in a state of resentment. Keeping a lid on your feelings of resentment will never solve the issue in the long term. Be honest with yourself and accept whatever is bothering you, however, small it might be.
Use Expressive Writing To Heal Yourself
Your old unhealed emotional wound keeps you unhappy in your relationship. Whenever there is a new issue even a minor one that old unhealed wound becomes raw again. Your reactions become disproportionate to the level of offense made by your spouse and a cycle of blame game starts.
Expressive writing might help you to let go of the past hurts in your marriage and heal fully from your old emotional wounds. It has been proved by research that expressive writing promotes healing (both emotional and physical) and can help us to handle our emotions better.
Expressive writing is not about facts and figures but about feelings and emotions attached to a painful incident. Just take a pen and paper and write about your experience, feelings, and emotions attached to that resentment. Take your heart out on a piece of paper and you will know yourself better, think clearly and heal yourself in the process. I have personally experienced that expressive writing helps you feel better instantly.
Intentionally Forgive Yourself & Your Spouse
Whenever you have an old grudge against your spouse you might also tend to beat yourself up for being naïve and stupid for not safeguarding yourself. You might beat yourself up for expecting too much. Once you have expressed your feelings through expressive writing it becomes easy to forgive yourself and your spouse. Imagine forgiving your spouse and feel the feeling of calmness and lightness then intentionally forgive him or her. Say it loud out that you are choosing peace and forgiving yourself and your spouse. It will help you bury that old resentment once and for all so that you can move on.
4. Discuss Your Feelings With Your Spouse
Discussing your feelings with your spouse makes you feel heard. After you write about your feelings and then intentionally forgive yourself and your spouse you have pretty much recovered from that old grudge, but still conveying your point of view to your spouse help you feel better and improves your relationship.
So I will suggest having regular heart to heart conversations with your spouse regarding all your feelings especially those which are hurting you. While discussing your feeling remember to stay away from the blame game and only focus on just conveying your emotional state.
Being vulnerable to get hurt in close relationships like marriage is common. Ideally, both the partners talk about the issue the offender apologizes, the other one forgives and both are good to go. However in reality, deep down in your heart, you might not forget the hurt your spouse has caused even after getting an apology and verbally forgiving your spouse. This grudge grows over time and can come back to haunt the relationship again and again. In order to let go of past hurts in your marriage, first of all, you must accept your emotional state. After accepting the grudge you are keeping you can take help from expressive writing to heal your old emotional wound. The third step is to intentionally forgive yourself and your spouse and bury the resentment for once and for all. Last but not the least, in order to let go of past, hurts in your marriage make a habit of having regular heart to heart conversations with your spouse.
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