You need trust, vulnerability, healthy communication and overall well-being when you are in a relationship with someone. All this is possible only when there is emotional safety in a relationship. It can make you feel secure, comfortable and free to express yourself without any fear of judgment or rejection. But if there is no emotional safety in your relationship, you need to work towards it for a healthier bond.
Health Shots connected with Noida-based consultant psychiatrist Dr Swati Mittal, who shared everything about emotional safety. She says it is a two-way street, and both partners need to feel emotionally safe for the relationship to thrive. Without emotional safety, there may be feelings of isolation, mistrust, and resentment. Prioritising emotional safety in a relationship requires a willingness to listen, understand, and support each other’s emotions and needs, which ultimately leads to a deeper and more meaningful connection.
Key elements of emotional safety
In a relationship, emotional safety is characterised by several key elements. These include:
Both partners feel confident that they can rely on each other and that they will not be betrayed.
Both partners feel safe expressing their emotions, even if they are difficult or uncomfortable.
Both partners feel that they can communicate openly and honestly without fear of judgment or reprisal.
Both partners are able to understand and appreciate each other’s feelings and perspectives.
Both partners are supportive of each other, even when they disagree or face challenges.
Both partners respect each other’s boundaries, beliefs, and values.
When these elements are present, partners feel safe and secure in the relationship. They are able to form deeper connections and work through challenges together with a sense of mutual trust and respect, says the expert.
Tips to create emotional safety in a relationship
Creating emotional safety in a relationship takes time, effort, and a willingness to communicate and connect with your partner. Here are ways to create emotional safety in your relationship:
1. Practice active listening
This will help to show your partner that you understand and care about his feelings, so be a good listener. Don’t zone out or start checking your phone or ignore your partner while your partner is talking.
2. Avoid judgment
Don’t judge or criticise your partner’s emotions or opinions, as it can only make things worse. Let him show you his wide range of emotions, and don’t judge him for them.
3. Be vulnerable with your partner
Being vulnerable doesn’t mean that you are a weak person. So open up and share your own emotions and experiences with your partner, says Dr Mittal.
4. Respect your partner’s boundaries
Even though you want to know everything and share all the possible things with your partner, there should be some boundaries and you should respect them. Every time he can’t say yes to everything you want or need.
5. Show empathy
You can do this by putting yourself in your partner’s shoes and understanding their perspective. That’s really needed for better understanding.
6. Use “I” statements
When you are communicating with your partner, use such statements to express your own feelings and experiences. It’s not selfish to think of your own feelings too.
7. Validate your partner’s emotions
Let your partner know that his feelings are important and matter to you. It’s not just about you in the relationship even though you have to use “I” statements at times.
8. Create a safe space for open communication
Lack of communication can ruin things, so encourage your partner to share his thoughts and feelings with you.
You need to be patient and understanding with your partner, even when disagreements arise. Also, don’t forget to show your partner love and affection through kind gestures, physical touch, and verbal affirmations.