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"I am sorry you..." (noticing certain phrases being used)

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WhySoSerious

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I have been browsing recently and have noticed that some users on the forum has a tendency to use some stock phrases in response to distress shown by others. I am intrigued as to whether this is intentional or whether there is an underlying, unconscious thing people do when faced with upset of others.

The common one I tend to spot is "I am sorry you feel that way/have been treated that way etc" but there are certainly others.

I tend to find these phrases mildly invalidating though I suspect they are used with the best intentions in the world. I notice that this type of response is often not caveated with an insight into how the person may feel or what they can do about the situation.

Has anyone else noticed this tendency? These terms are not good or bad, they are just what they are. But sometimes I feel over-used to the point of being meaningless.
 
bpd2020

bpd2020

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I do this. I had no idea it was invalidating. I am truly sorry if I have come across that way. I write it to show I empathise with the person.
 
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WhySoSerious

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Hey its not a problem.

I'm just conscious that it can seem like a standard phrase and not thoughtful. But at the same time I completely see it comes from a good place. Just curious what peeople think and how they communicate. Not a knock or call out, just like to make sense.


You are always very caring bpd2020 and I appreciate you!
 
bpd2020

bpd2020

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To me I am actually sorry for what the person is going through so I say that to acknowledge it. I then say something I feel can be helpful. You have made me more aware of this though which is good because to feel invalidated hurts.

Your last sentence really touched me. Thank you so much.
 
P

Purpleplum

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When it is just said with anything further, often the the person may not know what to say but they want to show support somehow.
 
jajingna

jajingna

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I don't know, "Sorry to hear that" is common, but it still works as it shows some concern.
 
SunnyDaze

SunnyDaze

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I think some things are said as a way of acknowledging anothers struggles, validating their experiences and letting them know they've been heard.

I say things even if I can't offer advice or have solutions. It feels like the kind,right thing to do. We all need to be acknowledged.
 
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Nukelavee

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Personally, I dislike those sorts of platitudes for the same reasons, and try to avoid them, but...

I think a lot of people get here, and have never had any validation whatsoever. for them, it's powerful and meaningful to simply not be ignored or belittled.

At the same time, I think if we get to a certain point in learning to cope with our illness, we move past where platitudes matter, we are in a place where we want more complex feedback.

Admittedly, I can be too far the other side, and sound callous in comparison when I want to point out where somebody has a blindspot that is actually hindering them.
 
UnstableSolace

UnstableSolace

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I feel the exact same way. It feels like that for me because I’ve never been complimented by my parents and so whenever someone else does it (which is an extremely rare occurence anyway), due to the unknown, I doubt them and assume that they’re just saying things to get closer to me, and I am not comfortable if they do that.

It is worth it to be treated nicely though, but it needs more than just one compliment, and from many people to wade me.
 
Fairy Lucretia

Fairy Lucretia

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i say im sorry you feel this way a lot ,and i honestly can't see what is wrong with that
because i AM truly sorry somebody feels this way ,so badly
im confused
when my boyfriend is poorly i tell him im sorry he is poorly and ask what i can do to help x
 
Fairy Lucretia

Fairy Lucretia

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most people are not qualified mental health professionals on here and we do the best we can
to support others at best we can give our own experiences and advise but what is wrong with showing empathy and saying 'im sorry you are in pain'
im going to keep saying it because i am sorry people are struggling x
 
Passionflower

Passionflower

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i think whatever members say to comfort people when they feel bad should be accepted in the way it is meant and not try to make people feel crap for trying to help. Just sayin.
 
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