Diving buddies
October 26, 2012 by
Categories: Emotions, Relationships

“Vulnerability is about sharing our feelings and our experiences with people who have earned the right to hear them.” –Brené Brown

We here at CI are big fans of Brené Brown. Right now a few of us are reading her new book, Daring Greatly and are meeting regularly to talk about the chapters. The above quote is from this book and really speaks about who we should share our fears, our shame, and our secrets with. The challenge that I have had with that statement is the implication it has for those that I deeply care about, but I haven’t necessarily shared the deepest parts of myself with them. What does this mean about my relationship with them? What does it mean about my feelings for them?

Image by barunpatro

I have really been thinking about this over the past couple of weeks. Those that I have disclosed to haven’t necessarily earned the privilege more than those that I haven’t. The thought that came to me is that yes, a person must earn that right, but the relationship we have with them is an added layer of consideration. Some relationships just aren’t the type to have some disclosures. It doesn’t make the relationship any less–it just makes it different.

When I have gone through the darkest parts of my shame, some that knew about it wondered why I didn’t share it with others who were close to me. It’s not that these people hadn’t earned it. It’s just that sometimes I wanted to be around someone that didn’t know, but that I cared about. Maybe for some it was because I was afraid of seeing the look of disappointment on their face, but mostly it was because I needed a place that I could be me with someone who didn’t know. Those places were necessary for my healing because they were a refuge where the shame didn’t seem to follow. I think this was possible because I know that even if people who provided me this space knew my shame, they would still have accepted me unconditionally.

I think it is cause for celebration that we have different types of relationships to fulfill the different needs we have.

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