Host: How do you create a safe place for your partner?
Gloria MacDonald: So, when you think about how do you actually create this safe place, I like to think about or give you an example of a friend of mine, she has a teenage daughter and unfortunately she hasn't figured out how to create that safe place for her daughter. If her daughter comes to her or she finds out her daughter done something that she is not happy about, instead of having what I call the level eyebrow approach and just saying and listening patiently and being open minded she says, "You what?
" instead of having again that level eyebrow approach. So, when your partner comes to you and or you find out that they have picked up the wrong thing at the grocery store, instead of bringing home skimmed milk they brought home whole milk, do you go, "What on earth? You brought home whole milk!
" or do you have the level eyebrow approach and say, "Oh, whole milk, that's okay we can use that.
" It's all about creating that place of safety by not criticizing the person and not making them feel like they are not in that place where maybe they did do something wrong but it's not the end of the world.
I have some other friends, a couple they had dated actually for 14 years and then, the 14years was full of them breaking up and getting back together and breaking up and getting back together and then finally, they decided that they were going to get engaged. They were in their 50s at this point and they decided they were going to get engaged and they bought a house together.
Well, two years later the relationship ended up falling apart. They sold the house and they moved out and it was really all about the woman never creating a safe place for the man. Whenever we were out with them she did nothing but criticize him and nag him and say, "Now, why can't you be like this other man?
" or "Why can't you do this and why can't you do that?
" She never created the safe place for him to come home to. That place of peace and security and the place where can you really, truly feel totally loved. So, the way we get through the turbulence in our relationships is truly by creating that safe place, having the level eyebrow approach, not criticizing someone, not going off you will rock her if something goes slightly wrong and saying, "You what?
" but instead saying, "Okay, now how can we deal with that?