We've all been faced with those hurtful moments when you don't know what things to do when someone you love disrespects you. It's easier to let things roll off your back when it's someone we aren't close to, but when it's a person we love and trust, those hurts run much deeper. With some careful thought, you can navigate the things to do when someone you love disrespects you without making things worse and hopefully begin the process of reconciliation
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It's All in Your Tone
I've discovered that one of the most important things to do when someone you love disrespects you, is to maintain a respectful tone. Our instincts tell us to be on the defensive and lash out to protect ourselves. This isn't' the best method for maintaining healthy relationships. While it may feel good in the moment, disrespecting the person who just offended you will not only make things worse, but it lowers you to their level. Be the bigger, more mature person and speak with an appropriate tone, one that you would like in return.
Hold Back on Your First Thoughts
Most of the time your first thoughts are ones of equal or greater offense towards the person who just disrespected you. It takes a lot of strength (and maturity!) to bite your tongue and hold back those thoughts. I know we are all guilty of saying things in the heat of the moment which we later regret. Once words are out there, they can't be taken back so choose them wisely!
Walk Away Temporarily
One of the best responses you can give to someone who disrespects, hurts or degrades you, is to stay silent and just walk away. Don't think that this shows you've been defeated, because it absolutely does not. It shows greater strength to know when to walk away and let your emotions settle, rather than flying off the handle in retaliation. It also silently allows the other person know the gravity of what they just said or did and lets them think about their actions. Most likely, when you don't say anything at all, the person in the wrong will come to you and apologize.
Keep Your Cool
Remember to keep your cool and don't yell, which only aggregates the situation. It's like throwing gas on a fire when you yell in an already explosive situation. This works in literally all scenarios I can think of- When you're calm, the other person has no reason to remain upset because your presence will have a calming effect on them.
After Some Time, Speak Your Mind
When the situation has settled and all parties are in the right frame of mind, don't forget to speak your mind. Keep your tone respectful and use non-accusatory words to express your hurt. If you're dealing with a difficult person, you could write a letter explaining your thoughts. I love this approach because it allows you even more time to carefully think through everything and the other person can't possibly interrupt you.
Consider Any Truths behind What They Said
Sometimes we have to come to the realization that there may be some truth behind what was said to you. The method may not have been appropriate but what was said could reveal something you need to change about yourself. Acknowledge any truths to the person who hurt you while expressing how you were hurt by the way they spoke. This will speak worlds to that person because it reminds them that they need to be eloquent and respectful when expressing any concerns.
Forgive but Don't Forget
Always remember to forgive your offenders. Especially when they are sorry and acknowledge their faults. Never hold anything above someone's head who is genuine. Lack of forgiveness only creates bitterness which takes away from YOU. So for your own sake, forgive. You don't need to pretend that the offense didn't happen, however don't constantly bring it up with the person later on; this isn't true forgiveness.
I know it can be really hard to go against your natural instincts of anger and retaliation when you've been hurt and disrespected. However, I believe it's in everyone's best interest to maintain your cool and be respectful! After all, you don't want one argument to ruin a relationship! What methods have you found to be fruitful when you've been hurt by someone you love?
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