Start Without invalidating

Without invalidating

The mutual validation of feelings is important in all phases of relationships including building, maintaining, repairing, and improving them.

Let's first look at the importance of being true and authentic to ourselves.

If we can't be true and authentic, we are sacrificing ourselves for the benefit of another, and we are most likely enabling another person's dysfunction. For these reasons, validation is never about lying, it is not about being ruled by the emotions of others, and it is not letting people "walk all over us". Validating someone's thoughts, feelings, or beliefs does not necessarily mean we agree, overall, with what they are thinking, or feeling, or with their behavior. An ideal target is one that is close to the other person's emotional epicenter.

This is a very necessary tool for dealing with people with Borderline Personality Disorder.

Validation of feelings is vital to connecting with others.

It also often means that we have reacted in unhealthy ways to feeling invalidated by the pw BPD.

We need to fix ourselves (the pw BPD isn't going to fix us) and we need to disengage a bit from the push/pull validation habits common to pw BPD.

Validation certainly isn't easy at first, but with practice it can become second nature.

Very few people come to this naturally - it is a learned skill.

We are often more aware of not being listened to (heard) than of our own shortfalls of not listening to others.

We may be reacting and resentful ourselves to a lack of being validated. In a "BPD family" there are going to be validation issues.

Your daughter is upset because her husband cut up her credit card.