If you’re the recipient of invalidating messages, know this: YOU’RE NOT CRAZY! You may need someone to validate your feelings, which means that you want to hear, “No, you’re not crazy.Feelings are real, even when the causes don't make sense to another person.And when people are sad, understanding is infinitely more precious that facts.We are demonstrating that we will still accept them after they have shared their feelings. How strongly are you feeling that (on a scale of 0-10)? We feel connected with them and they feel connected with us.We let them know that we respect their perception of things at that moment. Just the other day we took a small boy to the doctor's office and I asked him if he was a little bit scared.The relationship will be better because with more validation you are going to have less debating, less conflicts, and less disagreement. When a person is feeling down, these bonds are sometimes all that another person needs to begin to feel better and solve their own problems.
I sat down on his bed and said, "I really miss her too.
Validation is a critical communication tool and expression of love and acceptance in relationships. What’s scary, it can be one of the most subtle and unintentional abuses.
So critical in fact, that parenting experts report that it’s one of the most important things a parent can do to foster healthy psychological development in their children (Read: The Power of Validation by Karyn D. Denying someone’s feelings and emotional experience can make them feel like they’re going crazy!
Sometimes it means being patient when the other person is not ready to talk. I felt very sad for the boy but I wasn't sure how to handle the situation. Sometimes when Max wakes up from his naps, he's sad -- especially when his mama isn't home.
Most of us truly want to help other people, but often we don't know how, or we try too hard and we start giving advice, as our parents did to us. Since Patty often uses naptime for her work, I've struggled to keep wakeup time from being a descent into wailing. Conversely, invalidation is one of the most damaging forms of emotional abuse.