Do you have trouble talking about your feelings with your parents? About your fears, hopes, various emotions, and problems?
Aren’t parents supposed to be that first pillar of defense for children and a safe place to turn to about our feelings? That is true, and that is how it should be, but it does not mean it is always so.
Why can’t you talk to your parents about your feelings? Because:
- You know they just won’t understand you;
- They will think you are overreacting;
- You are afraid that you will disappoint them;
- They won’t care about your feelings;
- They will feel guilty for what you are going through.
At the end of that conversation about your feelings with your parents, one thing is sure, you will feel misunderstood, unsupported, and hurt, and maybe even with a sense of guilt as to why you turned to them in the first place.
The purpose of this article is for you to recognize the following:
- What is the reason that you cannot share your feelings with your parents?
- How to establish healthy communication with them?
- To realize when it is impossible to develop a normal relationship with parents.
That’s more than enough reason to read this article to the end.
Why Can’t You Talk To Your Parents About Your Feelings? 5 Crucial Reasons
As much as parents seem like superheroes to children, parents are still humans. And humans make mistakes.
But as a consequence of those parental mistakes, children carry emotional baggage.
Your parents also make the mistake of not having a normal conversation with you about your feelings. That conversation ends in an argument, after which everyone is hurt.
What exactly is the reason for this:
1. You Already Know That Your Parents Will Not Understand You
How can you already know that in advance? Well, it has happened many times before.
You approached your parents wanting to talk, but you were totally misunderstood.
That feeling of not being able to talk to your parents about anything can be highly annoying.
It is important not to emphasize that it is not a misunderstanding because they are bad parents. They simply do not understand you.
When you think about it, it has always been like that. It was difficult for you to find a common language with your parents.
It is not rare that children do not get along well with their parents. This can often be attributed to the rebellious teenage period, and later things fall into place.
However, disagreements and misunderstandings can continue even now that you are an adult.
This can also be attributed to generational differences, which are always present.
You may not agree with your parents about some things, which is somewhat expected. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t at least try to understand your feelings.
2. They Will Tell You That You Are Overreacting
Is there anything more annoying than telling someone about our feelings and getting the answer that we overreact?
This is directly diminishing our feelings and minimizing our emotions.
When you complain to your parents about your problem, they tell you, “Toughen up” or “We’ve been through worse, but we didn’t complain.”
According to that reasoning, if they struggled, you must too and not complain. Ridiculous logic.
Here you have to understand that, as in the previous example, the differences between the way of thinking of the generations are very noticeable.
We will take the topic of mental health as an example because it relates to feelings and shows the differences in thinking between generations.
Today, the topic of mental health is no longer taboo, and we are encouraged to talk about our feelings and not keep what troubles us inside.
That’s a huge improvement over when your parents were your age. Talking about mental health was taboo back then, and no one discussed it enough.
It is possible that your parents remained in that mentality.
That’s why when you tell them you’re depressed, they don’t accept it and tell you, “There was no depression when we were your age” or “Find a real job, and then you won’t be depressed.”
3. You Don’t Want to See The Disappointment on Their Faces
No matter how old we are, we still have that need to impress our parents and make them proud of us.
We’re not necessarily saying that this implies that your parents are perfectionists who pushed you too hard your whole life.
If that’s the case, it is certainly more likely that they know to get disappointed easily.
They had their own plans for you, but you didn’t fulfill them. And what’s really wrong with that?
That you didn’t graduate from the college they wanted or that you don’t have the career they wanted?
If you tell them that you have some current issues, they will say to you, “We are disappointed,” or “It’s because you didn’t listen to us.”
No wonder you don’t want to talk to them about sensitive topics like your feelings because you know you’ll get such a cold response.
4. They Won’t Care About Your Feelings
This is the most painful situation.
Some people aren’t parent material, especially those who are too selfish and don’t want to put their children before them.
When you tell your parents about your feelings, they don’t want to hear that and even get mad.
They are sending you a clear message that they don’t care about you.
You have noticed that they are calling you less and less.
They will probably be angry that you are bothering them in the first place and blame you for disturbing their peace.
Your parents may even use your words to control and manipulate you.
5. They Will Feel Guilty
We talked about parents who don’t care about their children in the previous example, and here we have an entirely opposite example.
Every good parent cares about their children and has the need to always help them, and of course, these are good things.
But sometimes parents can feel too bad and take everything too personally if their children are going through some issues.
So when you tell your parents about your feelings, especially the negative ones, they immediately feel guilty.
Your parents will then wonder what they did wrong, blame themselves for not preparing you enough for life, and desperately want to help you.
Because of all this, you avoid discussing your feelings with them because you know they will be too upset.
How to Talk to Your Parents About Your Feelings? 5 Tips
It’s completely normal that you want to be able to talk freely about your feelings with your parents. That is part of a normal healthy conversation you wish to have because you care about your parents.
Here are some tips on how to talk with your parents about your feelings:
1. Try to Understand Them
It sounds more challenging than it seems, but you can’t expect your parents to understand you 100%.
In addition to generational differences, there are mutual overlaps in thinking.
If you don’t understand them too and react dramatically to the slightest sign of misunderstanding, that conversation won’t get very far.
2. Avoid Blaming and Criticizing
Sometimes it’s too easy to blame your parents when upset, but you must avoid that.
If you play blame games, act ironically and sarcastically, don’t expect a positive reaction.
3. Choose The Right Time and Place
If the topic is sensitive, don’t ruin the family lunch, especially when more family members or friends are present.
It is essential that you have time and space to communicate your feelings without being distracted.
4. Explain to Your Parents That it is Not Everything Their Fault
If your parents feel guilty about your feelings, you must explain to them that it is not their fault.
You are your own person, and you make your own decisions. The fact that you want to share your problems with them does not make them guilty.
They don’t even have desperately to think of ways to help you. It’s enough to listen to you and be a real support.
5. Recognize When to Avoid Specific Topics
We understand that you want to talk about your feelings with your parents, but sometimes it’s better to avoid certain topics.
It doesn’t mean your parents are necessarily bad. You just can’t come to an understanding about some issues.
However, if your parents don’t care about you and always blame you for everything you tell them, we see no reason to try.
And is it sometimes necessary to avoid the whole conversation? This is justified if you think your parents ruined your life with their misunderstanding.
To Sum Things Up
Talking to your parents about your feelings is a great way to strengthen your relationship.
Be honest, direct, and patient, and listen to their perspective. You can build a strong and healthy relationship with your parents with time and effort.
If your parents, despite all that, cannot recognize the importance of your feelings and at least respect and support you, that’s their loss.