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Communication Without Thinking Of Results

by Richard
(Washington State)

I provided my love with a free trip to Hawaii, first class air, nice hotel near beach, wine and dined, rented car, etc.

She on the other hand, bought herself in Hawaii, expensive ear rings, many things to wear, and did things just for herself. On the last evening I took her to dinner, but all her self-thought had made me upset.

I had said nothing up to then, and with out any pre-thought, I told her, not asked, do you realize you have not even thought to offer me a free cup of coffee?

She hit the upper fan, stated that I could afford all of this, and made me feel like she thought I was a very wealthy person. I stated this little venture had cost me over 6k, and as she knew, I am retired and on social security, and only have so much in savings.

I did state, which was not good, if you want we can end this romantic relationship and just be friends. She hardly said a word on the flight back home and at her door said goodbye.

My question is how do I keep from letting problems build up inside me, and then just blurt out some statement that angers others.

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello Richard, and thanks for telling your story here. It's clear that you're a smart man, and that you want to communicate better, without pushing others away with your emotional reactions. I will try to help.

It sounds like you had good reasons for your anger. From your description, it appears that your friend was taking you and your generous gifts for granted, and was upset when you drew it to her attention.

One thought is that it is wise to seek balance in all of your relationships. When things get too far out of balance (one person contributing more than the other, for example), tension and resentment will inevitably build. No amount of healthy communication will solve this problem. I suggest that you choose to only engage with people who offer as much to the relationship as you do.

Regarding communication, however, it's always a good idea to make your feelings known in an appropriate, healthy way so that they don't build up and lead to an outburst. The web page on personal boundaries should help you with this part.

This is a matter of self respect also, Richard. Regardless of the difference that may exist with finances, no relationship will do well over time if you contribute more than your share. You are worthy of being with people who value you as much as you value them.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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