Bree Maresca-Kramer


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My boyfriend of 10 years says I make him feel bad about himself. I have stopped teasing him because I thought that is what he was talking about, but he still feels the same. Any Advice?

Dear Jill,

Let me start by sharing that you cannot make someone feel badly about him or herself unless they already feel badly about themselves inside.  It sounds as if your boyfriend is communicating only partially about what is actually bothering him. The positive is that he did at least tell you something.

Most men do not like talking about their feelings and would rather ignore the whole thing in hopes that it goes away on its own. Keeping this in mind, ask him to have an open conversation about what else is upsetting him.  When you speak with him, to ensure a solution and not accidentally further the problem, use your effective communication skills.  You could start by saying something like, "I never intended to hurt you in any way, I am so sorry, I love you and want to do my part to solve this." Your genuine concern for him and the relationship is a great foundation to be able to solve this problem.


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