Decide To Deal With Resentment
ACKNOWLEDGE the issue causing resentment
REMEMBER skills that work for you
EXECUTE a plan to forgive, or ask forgiveness

Self-Talk for Offending Partner to remember

If you are the Offending Partner, remembering and applying these self-talks that have helped hundreds of other offending partners:

  • “I must be patient. No really, I must be be patient! Just because I have tried to rectify things, I can’t expect instant acceptance. It will take my partner some time to trust me again, if ever.”

    Example of where to apply this self-talk:

    You are seeking forgiveness and have vowed to change but your partner isn’t responding quickly enough for you.

  • “I must work on developing empathy for my partner – to have greater awareness of how my actions may be causing discomfort or angst in my partner whom I want to protect so they feel safe around me.

    Example of where to apply this self-talk:

    Couple in automobile. Husband pulled maneuver that wife thought was unsafe. She pleaded for him to stop doing it, but he continued insisting it was safe and he was in the right. He was technically right in that there was no accident, but he  did not take into account the fear and anxiety his driving behavior was causing in his wife. He was focused only on the driving issue like a laser beam, instead of also being considerate of the emotional reaction of those in the car.

  • “I know I am right… but I don’t have to prove it all the time. Let them discover it. So sweet when they do!”

    Example of where to apply this self-talk:

    Jim and Mary had been married 20 years most of which had been spent with Mary seeing Jim as a project to work on. Jim had deep resentment but buried it, saying nothing but “yes, dear”. Mary criticized almost everything he did-and was right most of the time. But in the process she lost the love of her husband over “being right” about many things that didn’t matter anyhow.

  • “I will try harder to simply do (or not do) the things that cause resentment in my partner. I could change if I really wanted to.

    Example of where to apply this self-talk:

    Most partners know what they do that causes resentment in the relationship, but they often continue to do it – but expect a different result. For instance, Mary complained to Jim for 10 years that she resented the fact that he didn’t help her enough with house chores and child care. In therapy, I asked Jim why he simply didn’t help out more. He answered that he did do his share, as he saw it. Truth is, when she complained, his self talk was something like “once the storm blows over I can continue to watch my basketball game – she’ll get over it.”

  • “Life is a lot better and a lot easier if my partner does not have resentment toward me and vice versa.”

    Example of where to apply this self-talk:

    almost all the time in a marriage. You do not want to live in a marriage of deep resentment because resentment can turn to contempt which is a death-knell for relationships. In many marriages, it blocks sexuality, it prevents intimacy and closeness and it leads to estrangement from each other.