Are they missing it?
Jan 12, 2021
Did you know, you can love and do everything right and often no one will seem to notice? Sometimes you'll even be asked why you don't love them, even when you are working so hard to show them you do?
Do you know why this so often occurs? It is because we each have different ways we feel loved and different ways that we prefer to show love to others. If you are not careful, you will miss it.
It is important that you not only show love and maintain the relationships that are most important to you in the ways that want to, but also talk about it and ensure they understand that this is how you show care.
You can also be getting loved from many relationships in your life and feel alone and neglected. This is often because you are looking for love in different ways than those close to you prefer to show it. Neither you, nor them, are even aware of this discrepancy.
Talk about this question often in relationships that are important to you. It is possibly the most important thing you can do for yourself and those you care about.
This was evident in my life a few times. When my youngest child was very small, I realized this was happening with us. I highly value constructive criticism. One way I promised myself that I would treat my kids was to always be honest with them. To me, this meant I would always give encouraging feedback followed by something that could be improved. My older daughter, like me, thrived on this method and loved criticism as much as I did. Which further validated that I was doing the right things.
If I hadn't been looking for it and paying very close attention, I would not have seen my youngest daughter's response to this same technique. She reached a point where she felt she couldn't do anything right because it was never simply good. She was looking for validation of a job well done and even though I was giving her that too, the after thought seemed to negate it in her mind.
Things tend to come easily to my youngest child. She tends to prioritize only the things that she is great at and are not much work to complete. The same challenges that motivate myself and my oldest daughter make my younger daughter run away.
She was looking at my act of love as an act of torture. This is only one way this works in our relationships. I've seen this at play with work relationships, my marriage, and my friends. When you start to see these differing perspectives, navigating them becomes much easier.
As an added benefit, you take things others do less personally. You truly understand that you have no idea what makes others act or say the things they do, so you stop assuming they are thinking the same way you are.
Start asking this question of yourself and of those you care most about. You will learn so much about where they need to see love and how. Let them know how you prefer to show them love. Tell them when you do these things it is a gift of love from you to them. They may miss the underlying meaning if you don't say it directly.