Tis, I. I have returned. I see I have some new subscribers and it makes me happy. So thank you & welcome!
I’m sure you have seen the video of Gabby Petito and her fiance when they were stopped by the police officer. In the video, Gabby is seen visibly upset when speaking to the officer because she and her fiance had been “fighting” all morning. The officer first made sure the environment was safe for him & for her. He told her to step out of the car and speak to him alone & away from her fiance. This was a smart move and I’ll explain why.
If a hard topic is to be brought up between two people in a relationship and you both know it could turn heated, then the first thing you need to do is:
REGULATE YOUR BODY
Gabby was away and began to speak to the officer. From the video, you can see Gabby start to regulate her body as I am sure her heartrate was up and body tense from arguing. The officer offered her to sit in his car so she could cool off, “relax a little bit”. Basically, he was helping her regulate her body. Obviously, starting a hard topic in the middle of jogging or doing strenuous work, is not the smartest move when beginning a hard topic with your significant other. Your body is already working overdrive and your thoughts won’t be as clear. Make sure your significant other is already calm and relaxed. Of course, make sure you are as well. If you need to take 10 deep breathes (4 seconds in, 4 seconds out), just do it. Even if it’s in front of your partner. You can do them together.
ADDRESS THE IMPORTANCE OF THE RELATIONSHIP
Even though the officer & Gabby were strangers, he acknowledged her interests and made her feel good and important. In the police body cam you can hear Gabby state she wanted to start a YouTube channel and start blogging. Being a blogger myself for many years, I can understand her excitement to want to speak to the world of her thoughts on a blogging platform and connect with strangers from all over the world. Unfortunately, Gabby stated that her fiance was not supportive of her dream to become a Youtuber or blogger. He was not addressing the importance of her nor of her future dreams. The officer readily told Gabby that she was not in trouble and was not getting arrested. This is very important too when beginning discussing a hard topic. Addressing the importance of the relationship is vital as it makes the other person feel important and not attacked and get in defense mode. This gives the person the feeling of being safe around you & that you are working as team to discuss the hard topic. The officer did this by reinforcing that Gabby was safe (at that moment) and she was not in trouble. He wanted her to know they were a team working together to resolve this problem she and her fiance were facing at that moment. This should not feel like a boxing match where both people are on opposite sides. Hard topics can be cheating, divorce, telling someone their loved one passed away etc.
This can mean 2 things. Never discuss hard topics in an environment that could turn deadly such as kitchen, on a bridge or near a waterfall. You get the picture. I am not saying get in a padded room, but going somewhere quiet and far from anything that can be used against you if it does get out of control is important. Using words that conjure up negativity will only bring on the defense mode especially for topics about cheating & divorce or even each other’s mother-in-laws. Begin with words like “I” and “This is how I’m feeling about this…”. Validate their feelings, which may be very hard if you are discussing how you caught them cheating on you. Remember, this may sound almost unreal and probably level of impossibility, but it’s just a general way of making sure you and they are in a safe environment with little (if you can help it) to no blame with words.
Healthy problem solving takes practice and not everyone goes into a new relationship with that mindset. Some may come into a new relationship from an abusive relationship and have no idea how to problem solve with you on your first fight as a couple. The good thing is that anyone can learn to problem solve as team and do it in a healthy way;
What inspired me to write this particular topic was because of how Gabby and her fiance could have learned this approach to fighting or arguing and not have gotten into what ended in tragedy. Relationships are not perfect nor should they. But learning to understand each other before a hard topic can create a lower outcome of a very negative situation for both parties.
Until next time my loves. Take care of yourselves and each other, especially when it comes to discussing hard topics. RIP Gabby.