There is an old Biblical proverb that says “wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.”
Wow. Isn’t that true. There is something sacred and intimate about someone loving you enough to tell you the truth, even if it might hurt you.
Yet, how do you respond when someone tells you a truth that hurts?
Do you thank them for their openness or do you get defensive and deflect?
Things to consider when someone you trust and have a close relationship tells you something that is wounding:
- Believe the best in them
Know that they are not intentionally trying to hurt you.
- Give yourself enough time to sit in it and filter through what resonates for you
Often our knee-jerk reaction isn’t the most healthy. But if you can take time to step back to assess what is the underlying truth, often you can find an area of growth.
- Thank them
Yes! Thank them. Even if it hurts, feedback is a gift. They loved you enough to go out on a limb, risk your relationship together, and shoot it to you straight. That is someone you shouldn’t lose lightly.
If you’re having trouble with any of those tips, know you aren’t alone. I don’t know of many people who say “please sir, may I have another?” after being hurt. But, if you aren’t sure how to process the healthiness of a relationship, the ownership of your own actions, or even your lens of reality sometimes it may help to speak to a professional therapist about things on a deeper level.