Ages ago I wrote a post on why you shouldn’t overshare every little personal detail about your relationship with your friends. But it hadn’t occurred to me then that the reverse is also true: undersharing can be just as big a problem as oversharing.
Because there are those of us out there who are too shy/embarrassed, or for whatever other reason don’t talk about things that probably should be talked about.
In these cases, it’s usually postmortem that things start coming out.
Suddenly, after a break-up, you decide it’s alright to start talking about those problems you were incapable of voicing while you two were still and item. You start telling your friends about all the crap you went through during the relationship, and all the red flags you were too blind to see.
So, why SHOULD you talk to people about your relationship issues?
1. They are your friends, and have a vested interest in your well-being! (One would hope).
They care about what you’re going through and usually want to help. Even if they can’t offer you any productive advice, sometimes it’s great to just have someone take the time to listen.
Moreover, sometimes, just saying things out loud makes us see them differently and think about them in a new light.
2. They too have relationship experience! You don’t have to take their advice, but sometimes people can bring up points that are worth mulling over. New angles that hadn’t even occurred to us.
Maybe they went through exactly the same thing a few years ago and have some great input. Maybe they were too embarrassed to tell you about something similar that happened to them earlier because they thought YOU wouldn’t understand.
3. You know that feeling you get when you’re in love with someone, that you’re the only two people in the world?! (The bad kind, where you think no one else has ever gone though this, and no-one can possibly ever understand you?!). Well you ain’t! And it helps to know someone else has been exactly where you are, and got through it.
4. Your love-goggles might be on so firmly that you can’t see the situation for what it is!
That’s why it’s important to introduce the person you are dating to your friends and family, they might be able to point out things you are too giddy with love (and hormones) to notice.
Sometimes, the people around us are just a little bit more objective, and can offer you an outsider’s opinion. Trust me, they aren’t trying to sabotage your relationship, they just care (unless of course they are, and then you might be better off with a therapist’s opinion).
5. If you’re scared to tell your friends about what’s going on in your relationship, you either have to find new friends that you trust not to judge you, or ask yourself why you’re afraid to tell them what’s going on.
If you’re too scared to hear the truth from someone else, then maybe you should be asking yourself if this person you are dating is good for you.
If you’ve found yourself at the point that you feel you need to hide what goes on behind closed doors from those people in your life that care about you most, maybe the relationship is what needs reconsidering.
That said. Don’t forget that they are just that, not a part of the relationship, and you should take their advice with a pinch of good sense.
6. That said, take other people’s advice! If you’ve asked for it, and everyone has told you to dump your cabbage head girlfriend/boyfriend, they probably didn’t all have a secret meeting behind your back to gang up on you, they probably just see something that you can’t. Don’t ignore them!
At the end of the day we all need support, and sometimes support from the person you’re dating (even if they are the most wonderful, loving and caring person in the world) isn’t always what you need. Your friends and family have been there for you consistently through every good and bad thing in life. If you shut them out of your relationship you’re basically snubbing your emotional safety-net, and come on, everybody needs to know they have an emotional safety-net, just in case things don’t work out.