I’ve crossed paths with a plethora of incredibly conscious, evolved, aware people.
The men who come into my life would be considered, by most standards, pretty “evolved”—they’re capable of talking about their feelings and do so freely. They know how to listen. They’re aware of—or have studied—Tantra. They consider themselves well-versed in personal development.
And they know how to communicate. Nonviolent and “conscious” communication techniques are standard fare. Heaven forbid either of us ever accuses the other of anything. We “own” our experience of one another.
But by pretending that we’re conveying ourselves more “consciously,” we often sterilize our communication.
And, while my partners’ degrees in New Age communication have often been a blessing, some days I just want to hear the raw emotion behind whatever they are feeling—not the nice, padded, easily digestible version that theoretically allows me to connect more authentically.
The “use your ‘I’ statements” approach has allowed us to remove ourselves from the real, raw emotional experience of the moment. Under it, I’m no longer a woman and you’re no longer a man: we are an evolved, sentient consciousness hovering above these bodies and discussing, completely without emotion, how we’re having an “Ego Experience,” and we’re working to bring more attention to distancing ourselves from the stories that Ego creates.
When consciously communicating, we “notice” our emotions: “I’m noticing that I’m feeling a lot of anger right now.” We mirror each other: “So what I’m hearing you say is…”
Sometimes it kind of makes me want to throw up. Or scream. Or hit something.
—Because we’ve completely removed ourselves from actually feeling anything. And I come out of the conversation feeling like we just verbally fluffed each other for a while. Nicenice. We “communicated,” so we did our work.
In reality, we talk about it until we talk it away, without doing anything. Great. We noticed it. Thanks for being so conscious, honeybun.
And we both walk away still carrying the intensity of the emotion we’ve now talked about, but not actually expressed—because expressing it isn’t clean or nice. It’s messy. It’s uncomfortable. And we’d prefer to avoid uncomfortable.
Emotions aren’t meant to be palatable. Relationships aren’t designed to be easily organized into observable reactions. Real communication is charged. It’s potent. It’s how we express ourselves. And its uncomfortable.
Who’s ever really felt better when they told their beloved, “My experience of myself in relation to you in this moment is that there’s a tightening of my throat, and I don’t feel heard…”
I don’t even know what that means.
I can take it. Give me the truth. The real truth.
Subversive Communication in Relationship, Step 1: Push his buttons until he swears. Repeat until the desired response is elicited.
“I f’ing hate when you talk round and round in circles and never actually get to the point of what you’re trying to say!”
Success. Buttons pushed sufficiently. F bomb dropped. “Conscious Communication” breakdown.
No more “my experience of this moment…” No more “’I’ statements” and “owning it.”
Just pissed off. F words. Straight shooting to the tender spots. Thank God.
Okay, okay. So there is immense beauty, power and divinity in conscious communication. It has elevated us high beyond the old age of blame, shame, finger wagging and completely irresponsible communication. And for that, I’m grateful.
My plea: let’s remember how to talk to one another. For real. And let’s have the courage to talk about the uncomfortable things.
Let’s give ourselves permission to have emotions—not just observe them and talk about them as if they’re things we carry in our pockets or observe through a telescope.
Let’s drop the sterility of language that we’ve adopted and talk to one another about our truth, unbuffered by words and catchphrases that make things “nice,” palatable and comfortable.
Let’s express ourselves. If we feel upset, feel upset. If there’s a raging jealousy in there, feel jealous. If we’re totally high on love, let’s ride that wave. Let’s speak up about all of it.
I want to be able to cry. To scream. To raise my voice, without you taking it personally. And I want you to feel safe to do the same.
When we hold space for each other, let’s hold space for being real. Even if real is uncomfortable.
This is real communication.
So for God’s sake: Talk dirty to me, lover. I want to know what you really feel.
Author: Heather Day
Editor: Caroline Beaton