3 Steps to Getting Over Resentment Together

Resentment is tough to deal with in any relationship. It’s a tricky feeling that can stick around, making it hard for couples to feel happy together again. Even when you have good times, resentment can pull you back into feeling upset with each other, causing lots of tension and making you expect less from your relationship. So, how can you get past this resentment?

Beating resentment isn’t easy, but if both people really try and keep at it, you can get through it. Here’s a simple guide I use to help couples work through these tough feelings.

Step One: Figure Out What Resentment Means

The first step is to really understand what resentment is. It’s when you feel angry, frustrated, and let down because your partner isn’t living up to what you expect from them. You might think you’re doing your part, so why aren’t they doing theirs? But here’s the thing: likely, both of you are not meeting each other’s expectations, and that’s why there’s resentment on both sides.

Understanding each other goes beyond just knowing what each other likes or dislikes. You need to get how to be there for your partner, to support and connect with them, especially when times are tough. Getting to the bottom of why you feel resentful is the first step to fixing it.

Step Two: Fixing the Resentment

To fix resentment, you need to really get where your partner is coming from, putting your own views aside. This means truly listening to them and accepting their feelings as real, even if you see things differently.

This might sound simple, but it actually takes a lot of work. It means both of you need to be open and vulnerable, which can help melt away the resentment that’s been building up.

Step Three: Stop the Patterns That Make Resentment Worse

Step Three is crucial because it’s about changing the habits that keep resentment alive in your relationship. Let’s dive deeper into the two major habits you need to watch out for:

1. Focusing More on Your Thoughts Than on Your Partner’s Words

Imagine your partner is trying to share something important with you about how they’re feeling. But instead of truly listening, you find yourself thinking about your own opinions or maybe even getting upset with what they’re saying. You might think things like, “That’s not true!” or “Why do they always see it that way?” This means you’re not really listening to them. You’re stuck in your head, which can make your partner feel ignored or misunderstood. When this happens, it’s easy for small disagreements to turn into big fights because neither of you feels heard or supported.

How to Change This:

  • Practice Active Listening: This means really paying attention to what your partner is saying, not just waiting for your turn to speak. Try to understand their point of view, even if it’s different from yours.
  • Pause Before Responding: Take a moment to think about what your partner has said before you reply. This can help you respond more thoughtfully and avoid knee-jerk reactions that can hurt your partner’s feelings.

2. Being Judgmental Instead of Being Supportive

It’s tough when conversations turn into competitions about who’s right and who’s wrong. If one person is always insisting on proving their point, it stops being a conversation and starts being a battle. This attitude makes it hard for anyone to feel understood or appreciated. Instead of working together to solve a problem, you end up fighting against each other. Everyone loses in this scenario because, instead of strengthening your bond, you’re just adding to the resentment.

How to Change This:

  • Focus on Understanding, Not Winning: Remember, your relationship is not a game. The goal is to understand each other better, not to score points by winning an argument.
  • Be an Advocate for Your Partner: Try to see things from their perspective and defend their right to feel the way they do, even if you don’t agree. This shows that you respect and value them, which is fundamental for a healthy relationship.

Relationship help in the Denver Area

Getting past resentment is tough but not impossible. It’s about being willing to dive deep into your feelings and being open and understanding with each other. Following these steps can help couples move from being upset and confused to feeling respected, understood, and loved. It’s all about patience, trying hard, and being brave enough to tackle the hard stuff together.

We invite you to call us at 720-551-4553 for a free 20-minute phone consultation. You can schedule your appointment via phone, email, or the contact page on our website. We offer both in-person and online Couples Counseling. We’re open to whichever option you feel more comfortable with.  We look forward to hearing from you!

Self Care Impact Counseling envisions a new age of counseling for adolescents, adults, couples & groups that makes a REAL difference with core values of GROWTH | BALANCE | COMPASSION | INNER HARMONY.