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My [20M] girlfriend [20F] hates venting to me because she feels like a burden and she would rather go elsewhere, what can we do?

My [20M] girlfriend [20F] hates venting to me because she feels like a burden and she would rather go elsewhere, what can we do?

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shelbywhore

I used to be the exact opposite of your girlfriend. I used to vent a lot to my then boyfriend and he seemed eager and open enough to give me time and empathise/sympathise with me and assured me i wasn't a burden even though at times i did used to think that i was and let him know that he could tell me when I'm getting a bit overboard. Later when things got bad between us (different reason), he admitted that i had been a burden on him all along. Crushed me to bits and I'd probably won't ever do it again with anyone. I get where she's coming from, and she's not completely wrong. I think you should try to be as open as possible to her BUT also suggest her some therapy. Edit: not exactly opposite


jealoushoe123

My girlfriend read your comment and said this is what she fears regarding me—she wouldn’t want me to do that, and I never will. I want her to flourish. I’m so sorry that you had go through that. I can’t imagine how it must feel for someone to say that during bad moments, and I can see how that prevents you from opening up again. How are you doing now?


shelbywhore

In his defense, I might have really gotten a bit overbearing. It probably would have had an effect on me even if he had let me know at the correct time that I'm getting a bit overboard. He used to say the same thing and I knew he was being genuine at the time. I don't think there was anyway for us to win that whole situation. I'm doing fine for myself considering this was barely a couple months ago though I'm trying really hard not have any hard feelings for him. We are all humans and we all have a certain threshold when it comes to dealing with emotionally overwhelming situations be it regarding us or other people. Which is why such things are usually left to therapists. If your girlfriend is reading this, I'd suggest her to start writing a diary. I had a habit of writing diary before i met my then boyfriend and it completely stopped while he was in my life since i would just rant to him. But now he isn't in my life anymore and i have picked up that habit again and it seems to work really well and calm me down. And if there are certain rants that she might wanna share with you, she could always let you read certain pages or you could willingly ask her for it and hopefully the chances of you getting overwhelmed by it would go down and assure her that she's doing fine and not being a "burden" on you. Edit: grammar Edit 2: okay i hadn't read the comment by the therapist before i wrote this and didn't realise mine was kinda similar and repetitive. But yes it did work out for me!


butterbean92

Yessss!! For journaling !! Journaling is so powerful !! I haven’t done this in awhile and I should pick it up again but I used to write everything I was thinking down all my thoughts as irrational or rational as they were. It gets it out of your head and onto paper so it’s less of a mess in my head. In time when I got good at this I would then take a highlighter and highlight all the facts of my situation in one colour and all of the mind-made stories I had created based on how I perceived things to be in another colour. For example: “what someone might think” or “what could happen that hasn’t happened yet” .... once I had done this it was easy to identify how rational or irrational I was being in this situation and what I had created in my own head! Which was completely based on my thoughts about a situation but not fact. It really helps to put things in perspective before voicing anything.


butterbean92

u/MysteriousBlueBubble this comment ! Perhaps you could suggest this strategy for your girlfriend?


shelbywhore

WOAH okay i absolutely love the idea of highlighting the facts and my over-thinking part of it. I'll immediately put it into practice, thanks for the tip!


slyg

It requires the bf to communicate properly.. and know the signs when they are feeling burdened. Then to communicate this effectively. So that you can share when he has the capacity to listen. See my other comments too


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slyg

I think I’m following and would generally agree


Cursed-Humanz345

That's true, but he claimed to be reassuring and I'm assuming that he also tried to sit down and talk with her as well. But I do agree with this comment in a general sense


FreakiLee

I really admire and respect your maturity, understanding, and openness about your situation. I wish I hadn't already given away my free hugz award. Best wishes xx


shandro

I was the guy in this situation once. I didn't want her to feel like she couldn't come to me, but I also wasn't equipped to deal with two sets of burdens at the time. I still feel shitty about my lack of communication and emotional maturity.


slyg

See my other comments. And yes.. both of you are responsible.. Mistakes will happen.. mistakes are ok. It’s trying to find the next possible solution that matters. That is success. To find a better way to communicate each time.


GatherYourSkeletons

This was me with my ex. I even told him to let me know if he needed space or was at capacity. Most of our time together wasn't even spent with me venting. But then when stuff started going downhill he told me I was a burden and it was my fault for feeling the way I did. I don't talk to anyone anymore about my feelings and even though it's made my depression much worse and I'm more distant from people now, they like me more.


RandomAccessMelodies

My first boyfriend wanted me to share my anxieties with him. I saw a therapist and only talked about my anxiety in therapy because I didn’t believe it was his burden to carry. But he always told me he would be there for me. Then he dumped me without so much as a word that we were having problems. A year later he said he dumped me because of my anxiety and that it made him anxious to date someone like me. That is the kind of shit that really fucks a person up.


Basic_Bichette

For what it's worth, I suspect he thought he could cure you, and that the therapist wasn't any good because they didn’t cure you. So many people think that anything can be cured if you just try hard enough. It leads to dumbasses trying to shock phobic people by surprising them with whatever they're scared of, hiding allergens in allergic people's food, exposing epileptics to whatever induces seizures, etc.


RandomAccessMelodies

Oh I think you’re probably right. I also had some issues with chronic fatigue at the time and he insisted it was because I didn’t drink enough water and the dermal anchor I had in the back of my neck was causing a blockage in my chakras. He just got engaged and I don’t envy that woman at all.


Femme0879

jesus christ why are you ME this was me with my last boyfriend. I was trying so hard to keep things to myself, but he was really hurt when i wasn't, so I finally let go, and then later on....UGH. Even when you communicate, even when you do the things you're supposed to do in a healthy relationship, it doesn't matter if you're doing it alone.


Kiddmenow

The same thing happened to me...with my current boyfriend. It crushed me and I have withheld a great deal from him since. We are starting therapy soon to try to get over this bump.


slyg

It’s not all your fault, you both share responsibility. The communication needs to happen both ways. It requires the bf to communicate properly.. and know the signs when they are feeling burdened. Then to communicate this effectively. So that you can share when he has the capacity to listen. There will be times when he/she doesn’t have the capacity to listen.. hopefully this isn’t too often. & work together to find out what you do if this is the case.. such as rely on a friend, therapy.. it’s a balancing act for the both of you. To figure out. As the same applies when they turn to you for support. There will be mistakes. Both of you will fuck up. Working together to find the next iteration of a solution to try and then experiment with. That is success. The keep trying part.


volundsdespair

For what it's worth now, him saying that was more a reflection of him than you. You specifically told him to let you know if it got to be too much and he said no its fine, so either A) he lied to you, which is his problem or B) he didn't lie but used your insecurity to attack you in an argument. Either way he's the jackass in that scenario.


scarninscrantoncity

Same thing happened with me and my boyfriend. Not sure what to do from here. I got a therapist but my insurance ran out so ... now i feel like i have no one to talk to.


MysteriousBlueBubble

Wow, I’m currently the guy in this situation. When things are bad she vents at me most of the day. She’s done therapy here and there in the past but refuses to go now because “they will just say the same thing”. It got to a point where I felt like I was carrying the stress of two people (the other being my own stress). And because she was burdened I didn’t want to share my burden so as to add to the stress - it did come out at points here and there and she couldn’t deal with it - so I withheld everything. It’s really affected the relationship but I don’t know what to do...


butterbean92

I think you could suggest journaling to her I wrote a comment above in response to all this above I’ll tag you in it! Maybe, if you put it too her it may help because no one is “just telling her the same thing” but instead it’s a strategy she could put in place to identify the facts from the mind made story that is not based on fact at all.


joker-lol

Very similar situation with me and my bf (and looking at the comments this isn’t unusual). I used to keep most stuff to myself, especially that which was difficult or hurt me because I didn’t want to burden my bf - who repeatedly insisted he wanted me to let him in, he wanted to be there for me and understand me etc. Then when we had a rough patch and some of our worst fights he threw it back at me that I was emotional, couldn’t handle life or myself etc. It really hurt and for a long time I avoided opening up at all and always put on a fake smile for him. He regretted his behaviour and we’re getting back to a better place now but I definitely still have those moments of doubt where my instinct is to keep it to myself.


bauwowowow

I highly recommend therapy- I find that when I'm in therapy, and have a safe space to vent, then I can talk about these issues with my partner before/after talking to the therapist in a less heavy manner. So it's more like, problem solving together or discussing rather than emotional dumping (which I save for my therapist) and I don't feel like I'm placing the emotional burden on my partner. It usually makes me feel like I have better tools to discuss these things, and make progress outside of talking with my therapist because all the extreme emotions have been dealt with, and I have a different perspective of how to approach them. I sincerely hope this helps!


MakeItSoQ

>t hurts because I’m there for her all the time and > >want > >her to use me and talk to me, she’s the person I care about most in this world, but when she goes elsewhere I feel entirely useless. How can I help her in general with her feelings and how can we change this mindset together? Any help is appreciated. Thank you so much for reading. I agree. I have a therapist and it's very helpful for sorting out the pressures and feelings in my mind. The first try may not work out, it may take several tries. If she starts to enjoy venting to the therapist instead of you, don't take it personally. At the end of the day the reason for the therapist would be to calm down her feelings of self-consciousness and if that works, it's not reflecting anything negative of you.


d3gu

This is what therapy is for! Honestly, it's great that she trusts that she can vent to you, but mental health is like any other health. She would talk to you if she has the flu, but she needs to go to a doctor to get medical support. She can vent to you about problems, but therapists are trained to support people through issues beyond a partner's level. I used to be a therapist and would often get friends/family venting to me about problems. I would listen and help with what little I could, but the whole point of a therapist is someone who doesn't know you, is trained in listening and asking the correct questions, and is non-judgmental. They are not your friend and they don't tell you only what you want to hear - they are a professional, and often the conversations and experiences you have with a client are ones that could only occur within the safe space of a therapeutic bond. Don't feel useless - feel pleased that you and your gf have such a great relationship that you want to help each other so much. edit: I was having the opposite problem with my dad recently - my mum passed away last year, and I've had discussions with him that would have been far more appropriate for a counselling session. I told him repeatedly that he should get some therapy, but unfortunately the waiting list was massive. I listened as a daughter and as someone who loves him, but I felt unable to challenge some of the things he said - he's my dad, after all! He is doing much better now, but a grief therapist would have been exponentially better.


HaleyBugga

Also, it's important that venting is not the same thing as sharing your problems and asking for support! Venting is more like when you just word-vomit all over somebody, generally without looking for any productive conclusion or checking in with the listener first (to make sure they're in a space to receive it). It's not healthy to vent to *anybody* a lot. But as your partner, it's still important that she *communicates* about the things in her life that are ailing her. I would highlight this distinction in your conversation with her!


Wooster182

I would just say that you shouldn’t be everything to each other and it’s ok for her to have other people she relies on and talks to.


jealoushoe123

I have said the same to her before, she’s more than welcome to vent to anyone else; the issue lies with the fact that throughout the whole day, I was asking many times if she’s okay, what’s wrong, what’s on her mind, etc, and the entire day I got dead responses or her just saying she’s fine, she promises, and then she went and vented to someone else straight away without them even asking when I was there asking the whole time.


Wooster182

Ok that’s a bit different. I wouldn’t focus so much on the venting. Sounds like you’ve got communications issues. If you can get counseling, I think you should.


MooPig48

I guarantee you that relentlessly asking if she's ok and what is wrong is making her anxiety worse. That's REALLY annoying.


chasingstatues

This sounds like it's more your problem than hers. She doesn't want to vent to you and she has other avenues for that. Which means that, when she's in a mood, all she needs from you is space and kindness. Is that really an issue? How often does she have a funky day like this?


messy-blue

Not really. That *is* an issue if he can sense somethings wrong and she lies to him to say she’s fine. If she were to say “I am having a bad day, but don’t worry. I’m going to express/handle my feelings and I will let you know when I’m feeling better.” At least she’s communicating with him and he can feel like he can appropriately be there for her, even if it’s just doing little things, instead of venting. But she does lie to him to say she’s fine and goes behind his back, that’s kind of a problem.


chasingstatues

Sure, she should be better at saying that. *But,* I wonder how hard it is for her to say that when OP wants to be so involved. I imagine he wouldn't accept her saying she's not okay and needs space anymore than he accepts her just saying she's okay. He said in that comment he spent all day hovering and asking her what's wrong. That sounds exhausting and like way too much. Maybe it's no wonder she tries to tell him nothing is wrong. Because it does sound like she already tried to tell him before that he's not the person she wants to vent to and he doesn't accept that. So yeah, she should be able to say what you suggested. But OP needs to be able to deal with it if she says that.


messy-blue

Isnt that the point of a relationship? To compromise? They could come to an agreement where she is honest and says she’s not okay but doesn’t want to talk about it, he acknowledges she’s not okay and won’t press her for more information. Instead buys her ice cream, picks her favorite movie on Netflix, go on a walk together. It does sound exhausting, but you’re also glossing over the fact that she is lying to him. This is probably pushing him to think if he shows/does *certain thing* she’ll want to be honest and share more with him. Dishonesty and lack of communication is a big problem and can cause people to react strangely. You’re blaming OP here which is strange to me. They’re both in the wrong. He needs to accept her boundaries, she needs to be honest. There’s no making excuses for the other. The communication is off. It seems like it has to be what she wants or what he wants. Instead of both of them coming to an understand and meeting in the middle so they can both feel cared for and listened to.


chasingstatues

I agreed she should be honest. I'm only adding that maybe OP's behavior is the reason she wasn't. Obviously they need to figure out how to talk to each other. But this is an advice post for OP, not his gf, so my advice is that he reflects on his behavior and how that might influence her behavior.


Wooster182

I agree. I would just say that she needs to find a better way to communicate. Instead of ignoring, saying, “Hey, I’m ok. I just need to talk to XX.” And OP needs to work on being okay with that.


donnamon

Asking her if shes okay throughout the day sounds really needy in my personal opinion. I would be pretty annoyed and pissy if my bf kept asking me that all day. I talk to my bf about some things, whereas girl to girl talk, is different. We gal friend and I like to talk and vent and anything and everything and it’s fun without any arguments.


CrudeAsAButton

If she’s clearly not okay, of course he’s going to ask. And on the flip side of things, it’s not fun to hang out with someone who is clearly wallowing in their emotions but refuses to tell you what’s wrong.


mahtrowaway

I mean this sounds like you have *said* you think it's ok to have other people to vent to, but you don't actually believe it deep down. There's nothing wrong with this. You were not the person she wanted to vent to about this particular topic at this particular time. That's ok.


bunnycrush_

Therapy for you both. She gets a *professional listener and supporter*, who by nature of the relationship, she isn’t burdening. It’s wonderful and so freeing. It’s like a pocket dimension, where you can say, admit, or question anything without worrying about impacting the listener’s opinion of you. *You* (in your own therapy) get to unpack the codependent habits that underlie statements like, “I feel useless when my girlfriend gets support from anyone other than me.” Your heart seems very much in the right place, but that’s not a healthy mindset, nor is it conducive to a strong and resilient relationship. It suggests you believe your primary value to her/the relationship is as a helper, sounding board, and occasional emotional dumping ground. And I’m here to tell you, that’s not fair to you — I’m positive you bring *so* many more wonderful things than simply a willingness to be an emotional sponge! ❤️


ginger_kitty97

Ask her if knowing your problems increases her burden, and if she would want you to stop sharing. The whole point of venting is to lessen the burden for both of you. When you phrase it that way, she'll hopefully be able to understand.


cxstia

I’m admittedly very similar to your girlfriend OP. I love to help with my friends’ problems but hate taking about my own. If she’s worried about the supposed emotional burden, maybe have a talk with her and set up a system where you can let each other know if you’re not in a good state to be vented to, like a safeword of sorts or just the phrase “I’m not in a good place for this right now”. I wonder if it could also help to encourage her to write her feelings down, so when you do hear about her problems, you’re doing so voluntarily and when you’re ready. I also hear it’s easier to let go of what you’re feeling when it’s put in writing. Also, is it possible she had a past relationship with someone who was never emotionally available as you are? It might be why she’s so reluctant to share with you. Anyways, best of luck to you both! You sound like a great boyfriend :)


jealoushoe123

She was unfortunately humiliated for opening up about her feelings and mental issues with her last partner, so I see how this can be a deterrent for someone to open up. I’m upset that she had to go through that and want to be a breath of fresh air for her, someone nurturing and understanding who listens to her. I want to show her what it’s like to be able to discuss these issues freely and without fear. I love her so much.


sujihime

I feel like this information is incredibly relevant to the post. She's had a trauma for sharing things like this before. I understand wanting to be there and support your partner, but you are coming across a little intense and needy about this subject. I get that you just care about her and want her to feel better and want to help, but you are making it harder for her to share. Like others have said, you need to give her a little space. Not everyone communicates and processes shitty things in the same way. Your girlfriend should not just say she's fine if she's not, but you have to give her the space to say she's upset about something without digging. Just say you are here for her and see if she wants a cup of tea or something. There are ways to be supportive and help without having to be the one she's venting to.


cxstia

Oh no! That’s shitty and it always sucks that one terrible person in the past can impact us so much later too. You’re doing great by being there for her.


vibecake

Also figuring out the reason that she does this is probably a step you want to take. Maybe she had an embarrassing experience with a previous boyfriend? Or maybe her parents dissuaded her from doing this, and she thinks and that you will think less of her because this is how she was raised.


jealoushoe123

I said this in another comment but her last partner humiliated her for opening up about her mental health and feelings. He also told her parents (instead of telling her) that the reason he left her was because of her mental health.


__m_c__

(Repost per mods suggestion) Hi! It sounds like you two are looking for a compromise. She doesn't want to dump on you, but you still want the opportunity to emotionally be there for her. I'm going to assume venting means she just wants you to listen and not solve a problem. Here are some other ways to vent to try if she's interested. 1. Journaling. Maybe she can leave it for you to read when you want or share an excerpt with you. 2. The \~3 sentence summary: boil it down to a beginning, middle, and end and keep it short while still communicating the main point. 3. Scheduled worry time is a thing. Maybe try scheduled venting time and set a time limit rather than a sentence limit. 4. Expand the story so it's not all negative all the time. Example: "Here's a list of all the things at work today that really pissed me off" vs "here's a list of all the things at work today that really pissed me off, but then I got to come home to you so at least I get to end the day well." If you frame a narrative as only negative, it might feel like she's just filling your life with negativity and maybe that concerns her. If you frame the narrative as not all negative all the time, maybe that will strike a balance that won't make her worried for you. I would also point out that observing that anything good happened doesn't invalidate how infuriating other stuff is. It's just a reminder that most things/days/whatever aren't black or white. And an opportunity for her to feel like she isn't just bringing you down all the time. I hope these give you some ideas for how to be there for each other while still addressing her concern for wearing down your mental health. Maybe you'll think of some more together! Edit- Holy crap, thanks everyone from before for the awards and kind words! I'm so glad you found this helpful. I'm sorry my post got removed for a bit and couldn't respond to comments on it so I likely missed a bunch.


Additional-Drama1991

Set down a time to share. like a date night, but a vent night. You let her in on everything happening with you then sit with a set timer say 30mins she can share anything or nothing. After the first 5mins she should feel so awkward she'll blurt something out. Listen and ask, do you need a solution or some sympathy? Most of the time I dont want solutions just someone to listen. And if you know they arent trying to fix the issue its easier to talk about it.


fernshanks

So put her into an uncomfortable position to try and make her feel awkward enough to share her feelings? I dunno if this is necessarily the healthiest way


Additional-Drama1991

he wants her to talk to him instead of other people. He shares and she either does or she doesnt. not forcing just showing very bloody clearly he is open to listen. Plus she's already sharing with others so its not like she's bottling it up. He just wants to be more involved.


linamarie18

I’m similar to your gf. I’ve never been great about telling people how I feel but especially my boyfriend. To my friends I might talk them more in depth about how I’m feeling or what I’m struggling with. I know my boyfriend cares but I find it hard to go in depth with him about the negatives. I think for me it’s a fear that I’ll add too much baggage to the relationship and he’ll think I’m like completely helpless and have too many issues for him. I also don’t want to add stuff when I know he has a lot going on for fear that I’ll be the tip of the iceberg for him and he’ll break up with me for adding more worries to his life. I want to be someone who betters his life and improves it. I want him to be able to come and rely on me. If he knows I’m completely broken inside he may not come to me and will worry or create distance. Maybe she feels similar.


Little_ivory_fox

I am speaking from the position of your gf, as I often feel like I'm burdening my boyfriend when I tell him how I'm feeling, or going through family issues. The reason I've been trained to feel this way was my childhood, as well as my past partner being dismissive about my issues. As a kid I always felt the pressure to be perfect, and to not have anything go wrong with me in order to maintain the peace in my household. I grew up with mentally unwell family members, so I felt to take care of them was to keep my issues inside, so nobody worried about me. This has taken years to untangle, so maybe it's something she's still dealing with. My current partner is AMAZING. Whenever he senses something is off, he encourages me to share without any pressure. Just gives me the option. It makes a big difference because he leaves the decision up to me, so I feel more comfortable being open since it's on my terms. I am not necessarily looking for advice when I open up, I'm looking for support. So my bf is really good about empathising, and validating my experience. ​ Anyways, I hope that helps!


tonepoems

My husband & I have a weekly "check-in" and 2 (of the 5) questions we ask are 1) what are your current challenges this week? and 2) how can I support you and make you feel loved this week? As others have said, maybe if it's a scheduled time and you focus on how you can be there to support each other, she can share a bit more with you. Another idea is actually something we used to do at work! My colleagues would share a "rose and thorn" every Friday - so something that was the highlight of your week and something that wasn't so great about your week. In that context it was specific to work struggles, but maybe something similar would be nice (plus, you have the "rose" to keep things positive)


Reaver_

My girlfriend used to do the same thing with me. She still does to a degree, but we've both gotten better about handling the situation whenever it comes up. She's an incredibly practical person and doesn't want to put anymore unnecessary stress on me, but also has dealt with some verbally abusive past relationships that make her feel like there's not much of a point in sharing her feelings if they might upset me when she can deal with them herself. **If you love this girl, I encourage you to continue to be as patient and empathetic as you possibly can because changing this kind of behavior is very difficult and won't happen overnight. But you have to communicate with her how you feel about this.** These are some points I've discussed with my girlfriend to help her better understand my perspective and open up more: **-I know my girlfriend well enough at this point to know when she's feeling off/ in a bad mood**, even if she tries to make it seem like she's not **-As her boyfriend, my instinct/ immediate, almost involuntary, response is to find out what the problem is and solve it**, because obviously if I can help it, I don't want my gf to be upset **-If I ask what's wrong, and I get an obviously dishonest "I'm fine" when I know she's not fine, it's going to be very difficult for me to not assume that I'm the one who put her in that bad mood** **-If we part ways for the day and she's still in a bad mood but still leaving me in the dark, I'm left helpless and anxious** until I can get her to talk about it the next day **-She's afraid of burdening me with her problems and feelings, but as her boyfriend I want to take on that burden!** It doesn't make me happy when she's upset, but being able to be there for her when I can makes me feel fulfilled and like I'm being a good boyfriend **-Whatever negativity she thinks she's putting on me doesn't come close to the negative feeling I get when I can't help my gf/ feeling left in the dark/ helpless** **-When she tells me everything is fine, only to find out later that things were definitely not fine, it establishes a pattern of not being able to trust what she says** in these situations which is not good for obvious reasons -How I feel when she's upset obviously is not her responsibility, but considering **as her partner I try to do everything I can to help her resolve any negative feelings she has whenever I see them, it hurts when I feel that isn't reciprocated by my partner** I try to get these points across in the most non accusatory way possible. You feeling bad about her not opening up to you isn't her fault, it's just a bi product of her closing off that I'm sure she wouldn't want to put on you if she knew about it. If your gf is like my gf in the way that she wants to process her emotions before she discusses them, let her know that it would help if she said something like "I'm feeling off, I'm not sure why. I want to sit on these feelings for a bit before I talk about them, but just know that I'm not mad and I still love you" or something like that.


jealoushoe123

Thank you for your advice! Reading your comment was interesting because your relationship dynamic in this regard sounds **exactly** like mine. I have tried to tell her that it would be helpful to say “I’m not feeling fine but I’m also not ready to discuss anything at the moment” but to no avail because she doesn’t want me to worry, but I can always gauge when she’s feeling down. I do like the last part of your comment, though. I’ll give it a try. I should also try to be less overbearing and give her more space. Perhaps it’ll help. After writing this post together, we’re slowly communicating more and more, and it’s thanks to you guys. It was also helpful to my girlfriend seeing that there are so many others who are just like her. I can’t thank everyone enough.


Reaver_

The fact you wrote this post together is absolutely amazing, it's honestly making me emotional because that's so sweet and shows how much you both want to work on your relationship together. Breaking that habit of closing off and replacing it with being able to give you some kind of reassurance while she processes her feelings is going to take a long time. I can't stress enough how important it is to be patient. Praise her for the little breakthroughs she makes along the way, but continue to be upfront with how it makes you feel if she slides back a bit. You have to give her incentive to adopt this new behavior of talking to you about these things; anything that comes off as berating or reprimanding will only encourage her to close off more. My gf often feels pretty bad after the fact whenever this happens, and I tell her the same thing every time, and encourage you to do so as well. I say "Baby, I love you. I know your intentions are never to hurt my feelings or keep me in the dark, and it's why this kind of thing will never be a deal breaker for me, or make me not want to date you. But that being said, I will **always** continue to bug you until you open up and push away feeling like I'm annoying you, because that's my job as a boyfriend. You're my partner, I feel whatever you feel, we're in this together." She always reassures me to please keep bugging her about it. I hope your gf feels the same way. You both got this 👍


mylmagination

It bugs me that everyone's just saying 1. therapy and 2. depending on each other is bad. First of all, not everyone has the privilege to afford therapy especially for just everyday normal problems. Everyone needs to vent, even if its just small things. Needing a therapist for every little thing isn't necessarily healthy (or cheap), and a being able to count on your partner to be there for you is a huge part of what a relationship is. I don't understand why anyone would say it's bad that you want her to be able to talk to you at least SOMETIMES. You're not saying she can't talk to other people, or a therapist, you just want to be included in the pool of people she opens up to cause it's a fundamental part of a deep relationship. I'm sorry I don't have particularly good advice for you, I just couldn't stand that all of the advice was just straight out telling you you're wanting something wrong, which you're not. But maybe you can explain to her that you want to get to know her and every side of her, even the things she struggles with, and that it makes you feel close to her when she talks to you? Like explain all the nice feelings you get out of it, how intimate it is etc. Instead of focusing on reassuring her that its not bad, tell her that its something you want, need, look for, something positive not just something you can "put up with", if that makes sense?


ekrhappyorbust

I struggle this way too. If she feels your burdens, as some high EQ/empathic people do, she may struggle with placing hers on you - it feels selfish to add to your partners plate. Clarify that you are not burdened by her challenges, that you just want to listen and support her when she needs it.


tossed_salad100

Do you ever share intimate, vulnerable stuff with her? Have you ever cried in front of her? We live in a culture that portrays emotions as “feminine” and therefore “bad” (even though emotional intelligence is a core component of mental health and basic adulting). She may feel like when she vents to you, she’s talking to a stone wall with no empathy who can’t relate. This is why I avoid opening up to my bf as much as possible. If you can get in touch with your own emotions, she’ll probably feel more comfortable sharing hers with you.


nyclaurco

let her vent to who she wants to vent to. the truth of the matter is that when relationships get rocky, your past may get used against you. she doesn’t want to take the chance of that happening. she also wants to be a positive, happy presence in your life and likely wants the same from you. she doesn’t want you to associate her with complaining and negativity. i’ve been in a relationship before in which my partner refused to vent, complain to, or stand up to anyone else, and he killed the relationship because i became his therapist and punching bag (not physically). this is only a problem if she is in a rotten mood in front of you but won’t tell you why, which leaves you guessing. then that is no longer about who she wants to vent to - that’s a communication issue, and it needs to be addressed.


wreckitpanda

short answer: nothing. ​ But when she is telling you about her day or issues she is facing, it does not mean she wants to hear how to fix them, what you would do, or even suggestions, unless she askes specifically.


butterbean92

It would stem from somewhere! It’s about figuring out what has happened to her in the past that leads her to believe now that her venting to you, makes her a burden. My boyfriend used to bottle everything up due to the same reasons. I work in mental health and one time he told me a story about when he was really young his mother and father had separated and he was in the car on the way to school and his dad was venting to his brother in the front seat about his mum (he was too young to fully understand) when they got to school they got out the car and his brother burst into tears. I truly believe that seeing the impact of venting on his brother (although this is bringing children into adult problems and shouldn’t be done) was the root cause of this. Once he said this to me it totally clicked and I said do you realise that this could possibly be why you feel that talking about your problems with others is a burden on them because you’ve seen the impact from such a young age. I sort of distinguished the difference between putting adult problems on a child and talking to me or a friend another adult about problem. And he was like omg I think you’re right .... he still bottles you because it’s a conditioner behaviour but he has opened up about his problems to me ALOT more since. Hope this helps !


Sjh1961

If you are a couple, you are partners. Equal partners. A part of having a healthy relationship is communication and trust. When needing to communicate, be it venting, looking for solutions, or gratitude, it is important that both of you can trust the other. By this, I mean: 1. Each partner will communicate when they cannot be an effective sounding board, or communicator, at the time either need to talk, or about a particular topic either need to discuss. This is, sometimes, difficult to do. Everyone wants to be there for their partner when they need them. It's OK if one partner is not in a place to effectively communicate at the time, or about a specific topic. It takes practice to say, "I'm not able to talk about this topic at this time" when they are not really able to handle a conversation in a healthy manner. 2. Each partner can trust the other will come to them with things that they need to talk about with them. The things that both partners should always be discussing with each other before anyone else is how they are feeling about themselves, how the are feeling about the relationship, and how they are feeling about the other partner's actions. 3. Both partners can trust that each of their boundaries will be respected. To accomplish this both partners need to be consciously aware of their own boundaries and then discuss these with each other. There are topics that my wife will discuss with her counsellor or a close friend that she does not discuss with me. This is fine. She is an equal partner in our relationship and can choose who she wants to discuss something with. We do have an agreement that if either of us have concerns about ourselves, our relationship, or actions of the other, we will always discuss this with each other first. An example is she will let me know if she is feeling anxious. This way I am aware. But, she doesn't always discuss any details of her anxiety with me. She has a counselor to help her with this. And she feels more comfortable working on her anxiety with her counselor. I respect this. I don't actually have the background to be of much help. I can be supportive, but I don't have the training or skills to help someone cope with anxiety. I wish you all the best the world has to offer.


SketchySen314

I'm late to this thread and this will probably get lost, but here's hoping your gf sees this anyway: When I dated someone who vented every single thing to me non-stop, I never once told them they were a burden. But honestly I got burned out because it seemed that my partner never had any solutions. I was fine for the first few months just listening, but eventually I felt helpless because the person I cared about was always hurting. What fixed this unhealthy dynamic was that my partner got therapy and let me know I wasn't expected to fix all their problems, and my partner didn't become a constant spout of negativity for me. And I got therapy to help me come to terms with my unhealthy need to immediately "fix" everything. When I dated someone who was much more stable than me, and I was going through some mental health issues, I was afraid to talk to them about my feelings because I had been burdened in the past, so I thought I would end up burdening them. What fixed this unhealthy dynamic was that I literally had to accept that being an occasional burden was part of being in a fully committed relationship. By blocking my partner out, I was actively creating trust issues in my otherwise good relationship, and I was creating more emotional intimacy with other people than my partner. Also, we realized my partner only got stressed by my problems if they had other issues going on, so I took care of their feelings the same way they took care of mine. IMO the hard truth is that it's possible your feelings will be a burden in the future, but it is literally impossible to live as a person who never burdens anyone ever. If you care about anyone ever, it's unavoidable that they will want to be there for you, and also that they might be sad when you're sad. We all lean on each other and that's what love and relationships are for. The most important thing is that you and your boyfriend take steps to limit the burden on each other, and when one of you becomes a burden on the other, you get support from them while you work on getting better. If you can accept that there is a healthy way to be a temporary burden on someone (as long as your partner is not feeling overwhelmed), it can strengthen the bond between you two.


jealoushoe123

Hello! My girlfriend got to read what you wrote. She wanted to say that she realises now that it’s okay to be burden on someone because it’s unavoidable sometimes. She is thanking you for taking the time to conjure up this advice. The one thing I (the bf) personally wanted to say is that therapy is available for me but not for her, she’s limited to online therapy for reasons we can’t disclose—what can we do in that regard?


SketchySen314

Hello! Sorry it's been a while, I don't check this account often but I thought I'd try to respond anyway. If therapy isn't an option, I'd say try to talk to your friends more about certain stressors. This isn't scientific by any means, but spreading out your venting and misery among a a few close relationships could help. Actually earlier in the pandemic during one of my bad mental health times, my partner and I ended up realizing that both of us were saving all the emotional heavy lifting for each other, and neither of us were looping our friends in. What works for us now is if I need support with immediate family drama, I have a couple of friends I can go to for that if my partner's not available, and later I can just calmly explain to my partner what happened. Same for my partner. We still completely loop each other into our lives, but now there's the knowledge that we have other resources too. A support network is way better than ending up with an emotional support animal bf!! (also, my partner didn't have friends they were close enough to share these things with, but they've been working on that. Now they have some people they think would be very willing to listen if my partner would share, still working on that lol. It's a process. Hope y'all are doing ok!)


[deleted]

I can relate to this When you tell someone "both of my parents have almost killed me" it makes their problems seem frivolous I have no advice


AverageLoser05

Oh wow, I relate to your gf so much. We're even the same age too. I don't like to vent to my bf cuz I also feel like it's a bother Honestly, you should show her this reddit post. If my bf were to show me a post he did like this, I would definitely start venting to him because I just had no idea he would have felt that way! If you don't want to show her the post, then that's fine. But at least tell her how you're feeling. She needs to hear it from you.


jealoushoe123

We made together to get other people’s opinions on what to do regarding this, and we appreciate your advice. I hope that after beginning to vent to your bf, it all worked out for you. Thank you!


AverageLoser05

Well unlike you, my bf hasn't made a reddit post like this lol. Nor has be told me he has felt this way. So no venting to him any time soon since I don't wanna bother him 😅


GreatOneLiners

There is a spectrum when it comes to sharing inventing, most people get friends that over share which lead to huge problems, you have the opposite issue. I think it’s important to talk to her about what would make you comfortable enough to share her issues and why does she feel like she can’t share it with you


OneEye9

hey as someone with this same problem, she needs to go to therapy. It’s not about what you can do, it’s about her fears. You can just provide her the room to talk if needed


gdubh

Set designated vent times where she can let it all out. That way she doesn’t feel like an ongoing burden (even though she isn’t). Will help establish trust and boundaries.


NotAlana

Schedule it! We often feel bad or guilt over having unpleasant feelings but they're a part of life. If you two schedule 10 minutes for her to vent it can help her get used to it by seeing that you're not being horribly encumbered. It will probably end up making you closer, getting through hard times together is very bonding. It will also help her when she's feeling frustrated with things, knowing if she can hold it together for the moment, then later she'll have time to let it all out, it's an excellent coping skill.


pammylorel

Do you really listen to her? Or are you offering advice or trying to fix what she is telling you? If you are giving advice or trying to help fix something, that's what she does not want. Listen


[deleted]

Well dude. Never thought I’d see the day someone actually complaining about this


warmgefroren

I used to have the same problem as your gf and I went on to ask my partner "Can I vent to you?" and he says either yes, no or "what kind of a problem is it?". For the last option, we made a 1-10scale and he decides what he can deal with right now. Also: if she has real mental health problems, try finding a therapist. It helped me a lot and ultimately the relationship cuz I stopped "venting" about my issues with my family and started venting about my workday instead. Venting isn't "venting". Some problems require a therapist or counselor to give you a new point of view or technique.


merme91

Do you vent to her about your problems? If you don't, it might help her to feel less like a burden if she felt like she can help you too and it's not only you helping her. If you already vent to her, then the other comments here, like about therapy, are useful. You two can also sit down and talk about what you both find important in a relationship, and what roles communication and vulnerability play for you. Sounds like she doesn't like to be vulnerable with you, even though it's one of the most crucial things one has to allow for oneself in a relationship.


angxl__95

My partner is exactly the same. He always seems fine but I know deep down he has issues . He always says he doesn’t like to talk about it with me because he doesn’t want me stressing out or being a burden. I always reassure that his problems are my problems. We’re a team and we work things out together no matter how hard the situation is. I can also be like this too, for me it’s more like I find it hard to start the conversation off. I never know where to start or I’ll start over thinking that he might not understand or maybe think it’s not a big deal but we finally worked it out. We always check on each other and always ask twice if there’s anything on our minds we’d like to talk about. If I can tell there something wrong but he keeps saying he’s fine, I just cuddle up with him and comfort him because sometimes that’s all he wants, is a little bit of tlc.


TheBailey2020

Therapist has got your back, glad his advice helped. My two cents is, when a gf vents, they're often worried it will bring you down. But hey sometimes I watch a documentary about starving Africans, then my house looks like a palace! It doesn't have to add to the bf burdens, quite the opposite. Perhaps ask her at first (later you get an auto-sense) of the kind of shoulder she wants, because you will both want different listening/reaction styles for venting. So to borrow a few from my relationship: The Oprah: shocked at everything, shaking your head, nodding your head, totally on her side, adding "that's right" and "that's horrible" at various points. No lasting emotional engagement, but you felt and heard her stories and listened, and forgot about your troubles for a while. Juicy goss is on the menu, we like repeat offenders, our finger snaps can get sassy. The Dr Phil: "well is that the whole story", if you keep doing this it's going to end in ...". Basically serious parental energy, wild simplifications in order to get out the real story if you feel there's a bit of guilt there. Not popular, mostly annoying, sometimes powerful, especially if gf did something to contribute to negativity. Men are from Mars: "I will solve this problem" "this justice shall be righted" "my sole purpose in life is how to see you avenged". The problem solver. The moraliser. The fixer. Least popular option, but maybe you can be the first man in history to make this one work. Sometimes it's a rare time for real action. The hugger: Gentle massages or love language touch, scalp rub, head placed in lap, gentle listening, feeling it but almost as if it's part of a longer story, like it was a movie you put on (but you can ask questions). Almost disappointed if it's not a tear jerker or maddening. Good for those serious days. Or invent your own. The key is to consciously think or ask for the listener required before you get into it. Weirdly self conscious to do at first, like the first time you use birth control, but takes all the drain out of someone sharing their story. Think about it, we like sad movies, or movies with revenge or anger, not just happy ones. Partner stories can be like a good book that takes us away for a while. And different partners on different days need different listeners, so develop your characters, laugh at it and make it silly, and your ability to really hear the other and enjoy the experience no matter the mood will be the biggest gift over time.


sparky135

Just listen to what she says to you and be there for her no matter what she says without trying to change her. Don't give advice or try to help her solve her problems. Just learn to listen and really listen. The more she can talk to you safely without getting back advice or suggestions, but feeling that you really hear her, the more she is likely to talk with you. (For example, don't say" You can talk to me. Go ahead and talk to me." That is trying to change her.). You could say "I'm really glad you feel so much better after talking with Susie. I love you."


SelfBoundBeauty

A burden is something that is forced on you that you don't want. You're choosing to care for her, therefore theres no possible way she can be a burden. Try starting by being more open with her to model the behavior you're looking for. Start communicating with her when you're too into your own problems to handle hers, even before she tries to come to you. A quick text of "hey, I'm in a weird space rn/had a hard day, and I could use a distraction/some space/time to vent." If you DO want to vent, ask her if it's ok first. Get explicit consent before you start. When you're done let her know that she can do the same whenever she needs. Let her know EVERY time. It'll feel clunky at first but eventually it will be routine and natural.


Cassanova1987

Definitely not a good sign that she can't talk to you about her daily frustrations and such. Who will she talk to when she's feeling certain ways about your relationship. It's always best to go directly to the person you're closest with.


historygal75

Are you calm or do you get wound up when she is so wound up? If you both throw each other into a tizzy she is doing then best thing for you. Have you asked her if you just make it worse? I dated a guys like this. My Mother always told me don’t ever get emotional around men at least in the early stages of a relationship men tend to hate clingy women. I hate to say this but from what I’ve experienced myself of today’s men it’s true. It’s like that old 90s strong are you strong enough to be my man when I’m broken and I can’t stand will be strong enough to be my man. that’s why I think there is so much divorce today people aren’t willing to be real with each other.


majesticmerde

I’m quite similar to your GF, but my issue is not venting to anyone. Feeling like a burden to everyone. When I told my therapist this issue I had, she said something that I think about often: Therapist: “Do you allow people to vent with you?” Me: “Yes, of course. My friends come to me to vent or for advice, because I really enjoy helping them out. Being that friend that they can trust and listens. Is non-judgmental. It makes me feel close to them. I just don’t want to burden them with my own stuff...” T: **“Do you think maybe that you could be withholding this great feeling for them, by not sharing?”** MIND BLOWN. I try to share more often. I have an issue with getting close to people, myself. Hopefully, thinking of it in a different way, could be helpful. BEST OF LUCK!!


Token_Creative

Careful what you ask for, friend. I've had traumatic experiences letting former partners full on vent to me; I'm a bit sensitive so their angsty, negative energy used to stick to me and shape my own thoughts and feelings. After awhile, I grew resentful and became less emotionally available to everyone else around me. There's a balance when it comes to emotional availability, and it's important to know to what extent and to what subjects you can entertain as well as how to create and uphold firm boundaries for when you need to tag out. It makes sense you want her to share more with you and to be supportive of her, but make sure she still has those other outlets. There are things a therapist and a close friend can hear, say and do that a partner cannot; so, also, don't try to be her everything.


That_Other_Mike

Therapy! So my girlfriend has the same issue and to be fair I don't really enjoy being vented to on a daily basis. So we discussed how best to approach this and j encouraged her to seek therapy as it helped my greatly in the past. For a lot of people my partner and myself included the act of paying a therapist helps a lot with feeling like you are burdening someone with your problems. That's not to say we don't still vent to each other but the major stuff has a guilt free place to work through a lot of the problems before you include someone else into them which helps take the weight off of the item and it's more of a discussion of the problems than a major unload


findingnew2021

Just tell her the truth. You like feeling useful. So you like when she vents to you.


CatsDownHere

You can't make her want to do something. She has something that works for her, let it work.


Darkerr_

Therapy, i go to that and do not need to burden someone else. Also they are professional at what they do


Leastrasza

I'd suggest telling her something along the lines of "I am absolutely here to listen and support you. I promise you that if I ever don't have the emotional/mental bandwidth to handle anything extra, I will tell you at that time. Until then, I want to know what's going on, I want to support you in any way that I can. " This lets her know that you're there for her, and eases the fear of being a burden on you. Edit: a word


KrystalAthena

My ex definitely felt like a burden so the way I put it was like this: I feel like it's understandable to feel like a burden if you're venting to a casual/good friend. But to a SO, they're on an equal level of best friend, where with best friends, you never feel like a burden because you completely trust each other. So I told my ex, I feel like you don't see me as your best friend if you think you're a burden. It's ok if you don't think we're quite there yet, but it's also contradictory considering we were best friends (only for 3 months but still) before we started dating. But there's also a certain threshold of understanding how much of venting is "too much" by setting boundaries. There was a certain threshold where we learned to say something along these lines: "Remember, I can only listen and comfort, but if you want actual help and advice, this would be great to bring up to the counselor/therapist."


slyg

Hi Op and his gf. I just responded to a couple of other commentators, who have experienced the same issues as you are.. from both sides. I won’t reiterate what I said there. What I will add (to those other messages I wrote) though is that the core of the issue is trust. Do you trust each other to try. To experiment with each other and communicate clearly with each other though out the process. As a extreme example: your gf could just start unloading. Do it every night. Deliberately do it to the point it does burden you. That it really weighs you down. So that you can learn what it is like to be burdened and know the warning signs. Yes you can be burdened by her stuff and that is ok. It’s not indicator of you abilities to support her. It doesn’t make you any less of a man or person. Her concern around burdening you are completely legit! Hopefully, now you know the warning signs you put in place methods to prevent it happening. Though out this you will of course need to communicate clearly with yourself and her. You could even get therapy to make sure your not lying to yourself. There are other safer versions.. doing everything above but slower. Is one.


cringe-child

I think you should promise to have open communication on each side... this includes letting her know when she can’t vent to you right at that moment, you are busy with something. Little bits of honestly like that will help reassure her that you aren’t letting her be a burden, that you guys are partners. Ditto with venting to her. Just small reassurances that you guys can talk and vent to each other without being too much. If these little changes are still not enough to help with her fears, I think she should have therapy to 1) have someone who literally is being paid to listen to her vent and 2) someone who can help her open up a little more


TotallyNoGhost

I can really relate to your gf, I sometimes feel like burden to my bf when I come to him with my trouples and worries. What has made venting to him easier for me is plain old time. We have been together for 2 years and known for 3, and the time we have known each others for is the reason I can now vent at him.


SleepIsForChumps

Buy her a diary. Get her a nice one, not one of those little girl diaries, but a really nice adult diary. And then maybe also, start doing an end of the week thing where over dinner (doesn't have to be fancy, could be PBJ's, the point here is to do it together) take turns naming one high point of the week and one low point of the week. That way, neither of you will feel like you're burdening the other while still being able to share and help each other along.


KrazyKatz3

Can you tell her that if you know what is bothering her you'll rest easier than not knowing and fearing the worst?


milkybabe

I used to be like your girlfriend. My depression/anxiety would make me push away those closest to me because I was afraid of being hurt. I would just be there for her emotionally and physically whenever she needs it. Right now, she’s not ready to be 100% vulnerable with you. But maybe you guys can communicate and work things at her pace. Therapy could be a plus for her since she seems to have similar thought processes that I used to have which weren’t that healthy. I wish you guys the best. Just be kind and patient.


Dianasaurus_rex_13

When I want to vent to my boyfriend or to a friend, I ask, “Hey. Do you have the bandwidth right now for me to vent to you about [x subject]?” It’s a good practice in general that I’m trying to incorporate with all my relationships. That way when people ARE NOT available emotionally for it, there’s no hard feelings because I asked first. People feel less bad saying no when you ask than stopping you to tell you they don’t have the space for a vent session. Maybe she’d feel better if she asked for your permission first?


[deleted]

If you two don't learn how to communicate with each other, you won't last as a couple. I'd tell her that.


Tuerto04

I was just like your girlfriend few months back. It got worse to the point that my girlfriend almost gave up on assuring me that it would be fine to open up to her. Of course she didn’t and it wasn’t an ultimatum or anything but I soon realised that for the relationship to go on further and stronger, we both need to feel comfortable and vulnerable to each other. Let her know, make it a thousand times if need be, that you are there to listen to all of her problems. And don’t just stop there. Let her know too that you are the only person where she should feel comfortable sharing everything. Be the man she needs you to be without ever sacrificing what you already are. PS: both of you are still young and this is part of the emotional adventures both of you will endeavour. So be mindful. Go easy. Sit down and talk. Godspeed pal.


GatorTheGeneral

It could be your communication style. Do you try to fix her problems or just commiserate?


Goodname2

I've seen this posted elsewhere and somewhat more eloquently but the simple question of "Do you have the emotional head space for me to vent to you"? could be a start for you to give her the green light to vent away. And if you don't have the emotional head space at that moment and tell her no your gf will understand that this time she can vent elsewhere without you feeling useless because you are still her first point of call when it comes to dealing with her issues. It comes down to communication, honesty and empathy. Everyone has different demons they're dealing with on the day to day. Some days we just have to fight our own demons and that's not always a bad thing, it may lead to looking for other sources of help like this online forum or some outlet like exercise, painting or meditative yoga. Hope this helps :)


partofbreakfast

As someone who has been in your GF's position: record yourself on camera while venting, save the video in a special file. Don't show these videos to anyone else, but rather keep them to view for yourself. Alternatively, find a venting board on the internet and yeet your venting to the void.


BigKnockers00

Bruh, this girl is me. I live by this quote by Kaneki from Tokyo Ghoul-“It’s better to be hurt than to hurt others. Nice people can be happy with just that. ”  My whole fucking mindset is this quote.


kindall

Convincing her she's not a burden is not reasonable. Doing something for someone else is a burden. If you pretend it's not, she's always going to be wondering when you'll stop pretending and start using it against her. What she is really on about is basic insecurity: she fears that if the relationship becomes too much work for you, you will leave her. Instead, embrace the burden. It's part of a relationship for each person to help carry the other's load. Yes, it's work, but it's work you are happy to do because it brings you closer, because it allows you to prove that she can rely on you, because you know that when you need her to, she will do the same for you. Show her that the two of you are a team and that you meet each others' needs. At the same time recognize that you may not be able to meet all her social and emotional needs. This is perfectly normal and it's why people have friends. Insisting on being her only friend and confidant is actually an isolating behavior typical of abusers.


DeboMeister

I’m not really a good advice giver, however, it’s all about communication. A relationship is completely built upon this. I’m extremely good at it or absolutely terrible at it, no in between. I vent, my wife vents. At times, it can be extremely taxing on your own mental capabilities. Y’all are young, it takes A LOT, of time and understanding to communicate effectively with different circumstances/situations. As a young man you should be aware that women and men communicate/think differently. Where I exceed communication in most areas I also completely lack the emotional side when my wife communicates at times. It’s a learning process or emotional growth (for lack of a better terminology). Everyone thinks and communicates differently. Just try to use empathy, it goes an extremely long way. Empathy not sympathy is the way to go! But also take my “advice” as a grain of salt, can’t have you sending me a message telling me I ruined your life! Don’t know you, but I love you! Hang in there and communicate as effectively as you can and evolve with it, it’s constantly changing in the process of what we call life!


seananners7

He will absolutely find out one way or another, so tell him. Because if you don’t, and he finds out some other way, he will absolutely tell you that you should have been honest with him even if it still hurt. He might be upset but it will be far much harder to get over if someone else tells him.


Cyead

The key to this "game" is balance and communication. I have been in your position before OP and it did get overwhelming at times, it's inevitable sometimes, specially when it's something they have no control over, but that is because most people's response will be to either offer advice or try to help in some other way, when it's really not your place, so you both have to recognize that. On the other hand, I would sometimes get vented at about the same situation over and over again, without my partner doing anything to change their situation, so it became frustrating seeing them going around in circles, just venting, which is fair, but I also was her only outlet, so it caused issues. So going back to balance. What that means is that you guys need to find what works for you from when to what she's willing to share from her side and to what you're able to take from your side, most of the time whenever someone vents to you, you'll want to be like a "wall" that empathizes and listens, sometimes you might also become a "real person" when asked to offer advice or step in, but all of this depends on how well you communicate. So now we go to communication. Express to her with words how you're willing to listen, what you're willing to listen to, and when you're able or available to listen. From her side she needs to relax and understand that you're her partner and that being a good partner not only means being able there for the other, but also learning how to trust your partner and allowing yourself to be vulnerable, it's supposed to be a partnership with, not necessarily an equal amount of back and forth, but a fair amount where one can lean on the other as needed without feeling like a burden, because they know that they would do the same thing for the other and actually following through with it. However getting there won't happen overnight and will require some selfsteem and self-love primarily, and then just lots of trust and communication. So don't push too hard, but keep encouraging her to rely on you not only with the venting, but also with other things and you guys will eventually get there, also don't forget to also rely on her so that she can see that it's no biggie and that she's an equal partner, so if anything comes up you guys will be able to talk it out and continue being strong.


awheelo-17

Wow this is me with my current boyfriend honestly, I didn’t know others felt that way too.


anpe1014

I have no advice because I am similar to how she is but I’d just like to say how lucky she sounds to have you. You sound genuinely sweet & caring :)


Princess_Glitterbutt

90% of my therapy sessions are just me ranting at my therapist. This is what therapy is for.


Kranesy

I feel this often comes down to trust. Your girlfriend needs to feel she can trust you to say no and maintain your own health and boundaries when needed. It's not the reassurance that you want to hear her problems but the reassurance that if you are struggling or stressed you will ask her to vent later or to someone else. Maybe have a chat about what those appropriate boundaries might be. E.g. not venting to you immediately when you get home from work so you have time to decompress. Or remind her of other times that you have been able to ask her to do or not do things so she knows she can trust you to speak up if needed. Trust requires risk, so in the end she will have to take that leap. It might help if she starts small, venting about minor irritations to build up to venting about more serious ones.


dhffxiv

What was the removed comment?


konatada

I'm like this too. It typically takes a lot for me to want to vent to people and speak my mind and even then I still feel anxious towards the idea. What I would recommend most is therapy.


SlytherinSilence

I used to write letters to my boyfriend with stuff that I wanted to say but was just too scared/nervous/embarrassed about to actually talk about. So I figured “if he cares, he’ll read it. If not, well then maybe he doesn’t want to hear about it and I am a burden.” Of course it was the former but my point is, it was a way of communicating when I felt I couldn’t do it verbally, and I didn’t want him jumping to any conclusions relying solely on my behavior because that’s how misunderstandings start and that’s just a slippery slope to the end. It may seem juvenile but it worked for me.


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[удалено]


mahtrowaway

Um, it sounds like OP is the codependent one here. His girlfriend is explicitly *not* becoming solely dependent on him for emotional support.


twentycharacterz

Consider yourself a lucky man and move on from this.


MLeek

You can respect that your girlfriend needs, and deserves, more support and friendship in her life than just you. Unless she's silencing you and blocking you out entirely, you should be glad she's found communities or connections where she feels free to vent. You don't need to fix her or change her mind. You need to respect her and continue to be there for her in the way she asks for, and is open too.


stradt2019

What can you do!?!? You can count your damn blessings!!


MartyAtThePoonTower

Brother you are looking a gift horse in the mouth.


BlxckCalamity

That’s called manipulation my friend, you shouldn’t trust someone who doesn’t trust you, and that “I don’t want to feel like a burden to you” is udder BS especially after hearing that you tell her it makes you happy when she vents, my advice is concentrate on yourself cause you’re still young. Please do yourself a favor and work on whatever career path you choose before committing to romantic relationships


lostbutlovingit

Read Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. Won't cure anything, but very helpful in understanding so much of our own and the other's actions/tendencies.


mosquito_suit

How would antiquated gender difference theories help OP?