Tis the Season for Withholding

“I don’t know why. I mean don’t get me wrong, I love my family. It’s just they always ask me so many questions.”

Image: Family enjoying Christmas dinner, above mother’s head is a thunder cloud

God help me, I even missed the stupid bloody after-dinner board games.

The story that I had begun to tell myself about Christmas with my family — and which I imagine had been the cause of my anger and resentment — was that I couldn’t be open and honest with these people. I told myself that they expected me to behave in a certain way: sticking to safe subjects, keeping any negative emotions to myself, and that I was having to play a part instead of being my true authentic self, which I made boring and frustrating. What hadn’t occurred to me though is that I — not they — had created that expectation, and that I was the one making me stick to it.

UK-Based BACP Integrative Therapist, Supervisor & Radical Honesty Trainer writing about #RadicalHonesty, Self-Work and Mental Health.