Today while talking about feelings with my wife, I came to understand myself a little better.
For a long time I’ve had a strong, negative reaction to words of reassurance or support. I’ve often felt like they’re not helpful or constructive when I am having a difficult time with something. It’s been more of an issue in the last few months because I’m studying maths at a level I’ve never really got close to before and it’s been a lot harder than I expected.
I started thinking and describing how it felt, and came up with this.
Being reassured that I am capable of something makes me feel like the person doesn’t understand what I am going through, how difficult it is for me. It feels like they are minimizing the amount of effort it takes for me to work through this thing, reducing it to a simple ‘you can do it’ rather than being aware that I have tens if not hundreds of hours ahead of me to ‘do’ it.
So I have this subconcious belief that support isn’t “real” support if the person offering it doesn’t appear to understand the level of difficulty I’m faced with.
I don’t know what to do about this realisation yet, if it is correct anyway, but it does make it more helpful when discussing how I feel about things. Short term we can probably manage it together, but long term I’d like to be less upset by it!