Processing Emotions

My husband is an amazing man. He does many wonderful things for me, often without me even asking. And I should appreciate that. Instead, I often take him and his kindness for granted.

Take for example this past Saturday. He dug a bunch of holes and planted some bushes in our front and backyard. He cleaned off our front porch, moving all of my gardening supplies to the workbench in the backyard, where I have wanted them for a while. While I told myself over and over that I should appreciate his hard work, all I could feel was frustration.  I wanted him to be doing something else. So by the end of the day, I’m giving him the silent treatment because I’m mad, but know I shouldn’t be mad. (After all, it’s not like I asked him to do what I wanted; I merely wished it in my head). I’m silent because I don’t want to complain about it; I want to get over it and be appreciative. But I can’t. Finally, after dinner I have a realization. I don’t internally process my emotions well at all. I can know what I need to do – even what I want to do – but I can’t seem to get past the emotions of it all sometimes.

Let me interject a side note here before moving on. I don’t mean to say that you should bottle up your emotions. I also don’t mean to say that you shouldn’t discuss the things that make you frustrated with your spouse. What I am saying is that sometimes,  you do just need to suck it up and get over it. Pick your battles. Discuss the important issues. But you have to let some things go.

As we talked through it, I realized one tactic I can definitely use is to share my desire or expectation up front when possible. Rather than stewing all day and expecting him to read my mind (from outside, no less!), I should have just gone to him and asked. I’ll probably clear up the majority of these instances by simply communicating.

But for those other times, I’m not sure how to process my emotion and move on. Anyone got any helpful strategies?



  1. Your right they can not read our minds. We also as men and women use our minds much differently and that is a physilogical fact. Knowing how men think is very helpful and can give you a …”it no wonder” humor…
    Try to stop… think am I raging. what is the three pronged reason
    1. will have to do with loss or fear of loss
    2. will have to do with anger ,
    3. will have to do with shame or guilt (inappropriate or appropriate).
    By identifying these aspects of what your feeling one can deal with each one by seeing if it has validity or if it is falsely perceive.
    The gift of loss is letting go
    the gift of anger is strength
    the gift of shame is doing it differently
    the gift of guilt is amends.
    Perhaps that can help.
    Be Embraced

  2. We learned when the noisy boys were little to always talk about our weekend on Friday night, and any expectations we each have. It really helps us to each get what we need, and we feel good at the end that we accomplished something. (Even if that “something” is a long nap on Saturday!)

    And as far as processing the emotions…let me know if you find something that works. I struggle with this too.

  3. For me, I have to say it outloud to myself. I have to aknowledge that I’m frustrated about something, tell myself that it isn’t a big deal, and then commit to myslef (outloud) that I’m going to drop it and move on. It sounds crazy, and does result in me talking to myself quite often. But I think when I aknowledge the feelings instead of pretending they’re not there and then talk through why I feel that way, and take a “honest” look at if thta feeling/emotion is based on truth or something else, I’m able to let go of it a lot easier. I then have to commit myself to moving beyond that emotion. For me that’s where prayer comes in, a lot of laying down of myself and committing to pick something else up.

  4. Thanks for sharing and being so honest. It is fun to visit your site! ! I think everyone struggles with this! For me, I have to take a deep breath and process what I am thinking and then decide “is this worth it?” Most of the time it is not and I have to make a conscience decision to get over it. Although that is hard, it usually is the best decision yet. But for those times that you cannot let it go, I like to write out how I am feeling. God usually speaks to me then and helps me get to the root of the problem. Most of the time it had nothing to with what I though I was upset about! I wish I had the answer to this…:)

  5. spaghettipie

    D – Thanks for your encouragement. I’ll give those things some thought.

    LM – Yes, communication is definitely a big key here. I think it will solve 85% of the problem.

    K – So that’s why I see you walking around muttering to yourself on Sunday mornings. . . really, I’ll give it a try!

    CO – You have a blog! Writing. . . hmmm, now there’s a novel idea! 🙂

  6. spaghettipie

    SC – Thanks so much for stopping by. It’s reassuring to hear that advice stands the test of time. I have to remind myself of it often. . . in more areas than just my marriage.

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