When Hurt Feelings Make Us Lash Out


Having our feelings hurt can make us verbally lash out at our partner.

People in relationships often have differing points of view. This is understandable because in a relationship there are two very different people involved. But when each person stands his or her ground and won’t give an inch and they are both doing this, then it can become a fight. We might even call it a war.

We Often Escalate When Our Feelings Are Hurt

When our feelings are hurt, we may escalate things.

Many couples exist this way. One person gets their feelings hurt and then they take it out on the other, and the other feels so offended they lash back at the offender.

And then they are both throwing all that has happened in the past right at the person’s feet. There is also an escalating of voices and words and names that can occur as well.

All this happens within minutes of a simple misunderstanding. But then it grows into something big and well, then there is no backing down. No, both have to win this one because losing doesn’t feel like an option.

Fighting and Feeling Unheard Get in Our Way

Feeling so unheard you begin to yell or shut down can make it hard to progress through issues.

I had a client call recently and when I asked her what the problem in her relationship was she asked if she could put her boyfriend on the phone. I began to listen, but soon they were yelling at each other and I couldn’t hear what either was saying.

I said, “I am here to help you. I won’t be able to listen to you while you are arguing though. If you would like to come in, I can schedule you an appointment.”

They both quieted down and I scheduled them. I want to help people who love each other feel better. I know without even meeting this couple that they both are trying to get their points across and be understood by their partner.

It probably has become so frustrating that they have given up ever being heard and that is why the arguing ensues so rapidly. I am not sure I will be able to help them, but they both told me that they loved each other.

I want to help people love each other better, not tell them they have to part. But I know that arguing and fighting can exhaust people. And if you have tried lots of things to help your relationship and nothing is leading to anything better, you might start disbelieving that anything will work.

We Can Work Through Things Together, Starting with Ourselves

Deciding to try and rebuild lets you work through things together as a team, like the happy couple pictured.

But here is what I know. Two people who love each other have a chance to rebuild. It takes willingness from both people. One has to look at what they do to the other and see what the effects are. The other has to do the same thing. If both are ready to try and look at themselves there is real hope that good can be achieved.

No one wins a fight or a war. Everyone gets bloodied. Try and learn how to understand what you do when you get your feelings hurt. See if you can manage your own feelings, instead of pointing out what your partner has done.

Leave their work for them to do. You do yours. This is one way out. I know it works. I no longer make my partner responsible for hurting me. I have learned to take care of myself, even if I didn’t learn this skill in my own youth. Anyone can learn to be better. I have seen it. And it spells freedom.


Ready to Communicate with Kindness in Your Relationship?

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'Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship.' A book by Linda Nusbaum.

Learn how to improve communication in your relationship, by reading Linda’s book, Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It might just help both of you feel more connected, aligned, and loved. Give it a read.

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