Asking for What You Want

rhn-reallywantThis blog post was written by Recovery Help Now’s, Leslie Kolb, MSW, ASW.

Do you ever find yourself wondering why you’ve been able to find success in each area of your life except romantic relationships? You might be struggling to understand why you find yourself in relationships that feel frustrating or unsatisfying. A big part of a successful relationship is allowing your partner to meet your needs and vice versa. So how can you get your needs met and foster a partnership that feels good to you, the kind of partnership many of you seek?

It might seem obvious, but asking directly for what you want is the clearest way to communicate your needs and allow your partner to meet them. Though you may realize that communication is imperative for a successful, satisfying relationship, open and clear communication can sometimes be easier said that done. It takes courage to embrace your own vulnerability by opening up to your partner. It’s easy to instead shy away from expressing your wants and needs to your partner because, of course, there is always a possibility that you may be disappointed or even rejected.

And although fear can sometimes be useful, this fear of disappointment can be very misleading. It can tempt you to simply remain in that place of fear and ignore your own needs in hopes that they will go away, or that your partner will miraculously change on his or her own.  But remember, if you aren’t getting what you want in the first place, you might realize that you have very little left to lose if you open up and ask for it. If your partner is up to the challenge, then you can be pleasantly surprised, and if your partner disappoints you, it can help you clarify whether or not you want to continue the relationship.

This week, consider if you have been ignoring your own needs in order to avoid the risk of rejection or disappointment. What have you desired lately that you might not be getting? Be brave. Give your partner a chance to take care of you in the way that you deserve by asking openly for whatever you desire. You might be surprised how good it can feel to have your needs met.


Elana Clark-Faler
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