Advice for serious discussions?

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EstherRose94

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How can I best get through a serious talk without either being overly defensive or having a breakdown?

Like I refuse to wind up either apologizing for the former or losing some self respect due to the latter.

But I am really bad at emotional conversations! I’m a scientist and I need an algorithm 😂
 
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ziedite

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I find that the sentence "help me understand...." works wonders. Like "why you feel this way" or "why you react that way" or " why this is difficult for you to talk about?" It is non threatening and also doesn't make you oneself feel compromised.
 
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EstherRose94

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Okay. That makes sense.

What do I do in the case that what the other person says isn’t something I agree with or if it makes me angry?
 
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ziedite

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Well, it depends on your relationship with the person really. If it's your partner or family it's much trickier than just a friend. But strangely, if you say "ouch... that really upset me" and then pause for 10 seconds... it somehow calms it down a bit. Then try saying saying… "I hear what you're saying, but I do disagree because of ......." Avoiding starting sentencing with "you" and start them with "I" and it lowers the anger level.
 
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EstherRose94

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Yeah. It’s my bf and like I’m getting ramped up just thinking about the convo. I think he’s objectively wrong and I don’t want to wind up a blubbering apologetic mess after he tries to convince me that I’m wrong 🙈🙈

I love him a lot but he is such a stubborn human.
 
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Girl interupted

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Esther you’re stubborn, too. And that’s ok.

I agree with the phrasing above, it’s great advice. Write it down on a post-it if you have to, to visually remind yourself.

At the end of the day we cannot control what others say or do. We can only accept them as they are, or decide it doesn’t work.

Do what’s good for you.
 
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EstherRose94

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Yeah I guess I am 🙈

Thank you.
 

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