Confession: I may be a writer, but that doesn’t mean I’m always good with words. That sounds ironic, I know, but the truth is, I always felt too awkward, too out-of-place, too foolish to actually say how I really felt sometimes. I was always in awe of those people who could deliver those big, sweeping speeches that just seemed to leap from their hearts, people who, unlike me, were able to say exactly the right thing, in the right way, at the right time. It seems like I can never say the right thing sometimes – especially when it comes to guys I’ve liked. There are times I say things when I probably shouldn’t and times when I don’t say things, only to find myself regretting my silence later.
It’s never been that I don’t have things I want to say. I have plenty I’d like to say. And many times, my jaw would would drop to the floor after certain conversations, and I’d find myself thinking, “Wow, did you really just say that?” Other times, I become a walking, non-talking mime. It felt like it was so easy to become tongue-tied and let the silence make me feel even more awkward, you know? Here are some things I’d love to say, if I could…
*It felt like my heart was going to burst out of my chest on the first day we met.
*I knew it wouldn’t last with her. You deserved better.
*I’m sorry I never told you.
*I used to think that you were the one I would marry someday.
*Thank you for making me smile.
*Please don’t judge me on all those diary entries from my teen years. 🙂
Why is it that we sometimes have trouble figuring out just the right thing to say? Why do we opt to say the wrong things other times? Is it that we’re scared? Feeling too vulnerable? Or just chicken?
What would you like to say to your ex, if you had the chance? Your crush? The cutie you spot on the street every morning on your way to work? Do you overanalyze what you say – or what someone else says? Have you ever not said anything because you were worried you’d say the wrong thing? I’d love to hear… xoxo
[Photos via Le Love]
Try being less preoccupied with how awkward you think you are being, and focus on being considerate to the person you are with. Listen to them. Find out if they have any questions, or anything they want to say. Remember to not hold them accountable for how they feel, just how they act on those feelings, and don't try to punish honesty (even if the truth isn't what you want to hear). Sometimes you need to take a moment and remind yourself that you don't know where they're coming from. It's a good idea to plan out the things that you really want to say, and try to make sure that you cover them, but don't assume that you know where the whole conversation will lead. Have courage; those things you would say if you could- you can. Don't let being afraid of being vulnerable stop you. If you're afraid of saying something you don't mean in the panic of the moment, tell them that ahead of time, and if you suddenly realize that you ARE panicking and lashing out, have the courage to admit to it (and apologize, if you think it might be warranted). You can admit to being awkward, you can admit to not knowing what to say; sometimes you just need to take a deep breath and tell them what you're going through. These suggestions have served me well in talking to guys; they do NOT magically make them feel the same way you do, or want things to go in the same direction that you do, but if you're careful to treat them with respect and empathy (and treat their wants as important, not dispensable if inconvenient), and don't blame or make demands (or try subtle manipulation/ attempts at guilting them into things), this kind of conversation does tend to bring you both closer, even if only platonically. No guarantees. Just generally, if you strive to make them feel better coming out of the conversation than they did going into it, it's a success (compliments can help, but only if they're sincere and you don't overdo them). Sounds like a lot, but in summary: say what you want to say while making sure that you're treating the other person well.
Also: practice. Good intentions are important, but so is experience. That being said, remember everyone starts out inexperienced, and pretty much everyone still has moments when they don't know what to say.
I never meet my ex anymore, so I don't have idea what to say if i meet him. may be just, "hi, how are you?". that's all :p
Jenny in Ohio says
eh, I don't have an ex that got away! They were all the wrong guy! 🙂
Little Laura says
To an ex?? "Good riddance!" 🙂 Honestly, I have nothing to say an ex. I guess that's why they're exes.
But when it comes to relationships and I have something to say–I say it. Has it always been easy? Absolutely not. You know that feeling you get when you have something you really want to say and your heart starts going 200 beats per minute, your brain gets swirly, and your ears get hot? Yeah, you have to fight through that. Probably the worst I've ever had that feeling was when I told my boyfriend (now husband) "I love you" for the first time. The words were just sitting in my mouth. I had been wanting to say it all day! I just fought through that feeling and said it. Turns out, he was waiting for me to say it so he could say it. He was fighting the same feeling.
Jessi Haish says
i loved this post 🙂
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