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Acknowledgement and apologies

Hurting someone and expecting them to move on like nothing happened is emotional neglect. I am not referring to romantic relationships; I speak across all types of relationships.

Growing up in households where there were fights and hurtful things were said. And everyone went on like nothing happened, including you. It is not that you forgot; you actually probably never forgot. But you numbed the pain. You are probably already thinking of events that made you feel this way.

No acknowledgement. No apologies.

It’s not that no one felt bad, or regretted it. They did. They were never taught how to acknowledge their emotions and feelings. Hence they never understood the importance of apologizing, working on relationships and building stronger bonds.

You see this over and over again as a child. You get used to it. It becomes the norm and it is instilled in you as a program from a young age. You tend to repeat it in your teenage and adult life and in all your relationships. You don’t even realize you are doing it. You never say sorry when you mess up nor see any importance to it. Not because you are rude, but just that you saw anything different.

This taught you:

1. The way to deal with issues and problems is to pretend they don’t exist.

2. Ignoring people’s pain is the way to make it go away.

3. Ignoring the disrespect you felt is the way to peace.

4. Shutting yourself in your world is the way to stillness.

This is emotional neglect. Most emotional neglect is unintentional. Most of it comes from a generational pattern.

It didn’t start with you, but it can end with you.

  1. Have the conversations and open up about about what you did that you regret or hurtful. Own it. Apologize.

  2. Allow the person to share how they felt. Holding space is a key part of emotional connection.

  3. Speak up when you’re hurt: talk about it. If someone does not want to hear their impact, they are not safe.

  4. Know everyone heals at their own pace. Rushing, pressuring, or guilting someone to get over something will only create more distance. Ignoring someone’s pain won’t make it go away. Allowing it to be there with patience and compassion will.

  5. Accept how you feel and sit your emotions. Acknowledge the pain you felt; awareness is part of healing.

  6. Pain usually comes from expectations. How did you expect this person to react? What is the reality? Don't let your expectations of this person blind you from the reality.

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