It is hard enough living a life with pain. Add in trying to keep a healthy, happy relationship going and you could find yourself drifting in unknown waters without a paddle. I know that is how I feel sometimes.
It doesn’t matter how long you have been in the relationship nor does it matter how much each person loves the other. Pain can get in the way. It can make things difficult–uncomfortable at best.
So how do we keep our relationships healthy with our partners (much less our family and friends) as we keep up with our pain?
Do we hide the pain from those we love and hold on tight to what we hope is a healthy relationship?
Do we talk to our partner and try to explain how our hurt interferes with how and when we express our love?
There is no right way or wrong way that I can tell. What is important is that we are willing to talk and we walk that talk. Both people in the relationship needs to be able to openly express what they are feeling and how the pain affects the relationship, even if the words may sting and hurt a little to say or hear.
If the lines of communication are open then the topic doesn’t fester into something that drives a huge wedge between the two of you. Avoid this by finding the time to talk. Make sure it is a time where you can sit with each other and not be interrupted. Find a place where you both feel comfortable, a quiet place where the two of you can open up and share your feelings gently but honestly.
Talk with each other and find ways to stop holding back thinking you are just “keeping the peace”. It may not happen the first time you talk and it may take several different conversations to allow both of you to express everything that each of you are feeling.
Be open, keep talking with each other and remember that your loved one is more than likely doing the very best that they can to understand how the pain affects you in every aspect of your life. After all, it affects them too.
Don’t forget that your pain is also affecting their life in ways that they may have never shared openly with you. They just may need you to ask them how they are dealing with the life changes that pain can causing for both of you.
Don’t give up; this is just another stepping stone in the journey of living with pain.