Today a good friend and I were walking and talking about life and about arguments: the message behind the message or… how the topic of a fight is usually not the real problem… that there is really a hidden problem that isn’t being addressed openly in the conversation.
I had a habit in my marriage of starting an argument out of fear: fear that I wouldn’t get my way, fear that my husband would leave, fear that I would be perceived as the “villian” in a given situation. It didn’t matter what the argument was about… the message behind the message was that I was afraid.
Fear was my message.
Today, after many years of spiritual footwork I am brave enough to tell the truth when I am at odds with my partner.
Now, when I catch myself arguing about any give topic because I’m really… just afraid of everything… I say to the person I love, “I’m hurt. I’m scared. I’m afraid that this will end up as my marriage once did: in ruins.”
And what I have found is that when I am truthful about the “real” message instead of hiding behind my argument, the fear dissipates and the person I care for tends to drop their own guard, find compassion and is more often than not, willing to help me through my fear.
This does not mean that they will alter their course just because I am fearful… I must learn to trust in my partner if I choose to be in a relationship again… I cannot hold my partner hostage to my fear but… by being vulnerable and honest… they become an ally in removing me… as the hostage… from my own self-imposed emotional prison.
“Dear God, help me to be brave in all of my communication. Help me to share my true message when I am fearful to do so.”