14 votes

What has helped you improve your relationships?

Be it books, advice, tips, quotes, movies, activities, etc. Just anything that might've stuck and gave a new perspective on how to approach relationships.

Specifically looking for things to help improve relationships with family (parents & siblings), but honestly advice for any relationship is welcome (friends, partners, etc.).

Also thoughts on how/when to address topics such as mental health, diagnoses and sexuality or if they should be addressed at all.

Thanks

3 comments

  1. JXM
    Link
    I think it's important to talk about these topics with anyone you would consider a friend or close family member. It both de-stigmatizes the topics and these are topics that general cut to the...

    thoughts on how/when to address topics such as mental health, diagnoses and sexuality or if they should be addressed at all.

    I think it's important to talk about these topics with anyone you would consider a friend or close family member. It both de-stigmatizes the topics and these are topics that general cut to the core of who you are. I'll admit that talking about these things can be hard. Very hard, in fact. I have a group of friends that I've known since we were all in elementary school. It's only in the last three or four years that we've started talking about our mental health (which can include sexuality). It was awkward and difficult at first, but over the past few years, it's really increased my emotional maturity and ability to understand and empathize with others.

    Obviously you don't want to dump all of it at one time and finding out when you've crossed the line into oversharing is difficult - I don't have a good answer for that other than to just feel out how other people react.

    8 votes
  2. corleone
    (edited )
    Link
    Specifically talking about romantic relationships, but possibly true for other kinds. Yes it is important to have ample dialogue, this became a cliché at this point, but that doesn't mean every...

    Specifically talking about romantic relationships, but possibly true for other kinds.

    Yes it is important to have ample dialogue, this became a cliché at this point, but that doesn't mean every little point of contention must be carelessly stated at all times, let alone repeatedly.

    Identify the kinds of conversation that often generate meaningless, unproductive conflict, and shut your mouth when you're approaching the point of no return.

    This is true about sensitive subjects, but also applies to teasing and joking. Everyone has their limits and you must respect that.

    8 votes
  3. Gaywallet
    Link
    The absolute biggest tip I can give is to work on your communication skills and emotional intelligence. This will help you in any relationships in your life from the spectrum of complete strangers...

    The absolute biggest tip I can give is to work on your communication skills and emotional intelligence. This will help you in any relationships in your life from the spectrum of complete strangers to lifelong relationships. To this extent I would recommend the following short list of books I've read which I found particularly useful or insightful. If you only have time for one of these books, it's the first one:

    • How to win friends and influence people, Dale Carnegie
    • Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman
    • Emotions Revealed, Paul Ekman

    but even with these skills you will need endless practice, and you'll need to make sure to make a conscious decision to exercise these skills while communicating with others. This isn't just something you read through quickly, derive insight, and continue on with your life. It's the kind of skill where you need to decide to focus on specific skills for set periods of time and you need to reach out to and communicate with other people to assess, re-evaluate, and learn from others at any chance you get. You can practice these skills on this very website, by talking in a meta-narrative or addressing communication itself directly or checking in with people via private messages.

    Also thoughts on how/when to address topics such as mental health, diagnoses and sexuality or if they should be addressed at all.

    I would highly recommend reading material made by people with mental health concerns or of gender and sexual minority status on how/when to address these topics first. I don't have a good set of resources on this available as I fall into both categories and organically learned through the sum of my experiences in these communities. However, I can tell you that unless you're already incredibly respectful and know how to float around for awhile and watch how people interact with each other there's a high chance that entering into any of these groups as an ally may go poorly if you don't already have at least some of these skills, or you are specifically entering a space that is designed to help out people like you. There's likely a decent amount of 'ally' support groups or spaces in which you can gain some of this education and knowledge, but the long and short of it is that you need to be very careful with how you word what you say, and you pretty much shouldn't ever breach the subject itself unless the person has already invited you to do so.

    4 votes