Holding Back

There are definitely times where I get the sense that someone I am with is holding back and not saying something they would like to express but don’t feel they can or should at that moment.  I catch myself doing this as well with one particular person but on occasion with others as well.  It happens when I am not certain where I stand with someone or aren’t sure how they will react to what I would like to say.  But then later on, I usually wish I had gone ahead and said whatever it was anyway because I’m not sure I will have an opportunity to do so down the road.

I used to keep my thoughts to myself more so than I do now.  I have learned from this feeling of regret that I should speak my mind when I have the opportunity, but I still hold back at times.  It’s that uncertainty that gets to me every time.  I am definitely a pretty straight-forward person who doesn’t play games.  You don’t typically have to wonder how I feel about something or someone because I will usually tell you, although I will do it tactfully when necessary.  I don’t like having to play guessing games trying to figure out where someone else’s head is at, so I like it when other people are the same way with me and just speak their mind, good or bad.

I understand that there may be other legitimate reasons people hold back expressing their feelings, thoughts, or desires, but I want to eliminate the person feeling uncertain of what I will think or how I will feel as a reason whenever possible. Therefore, I try not to hold back my thoughts most of the time.  There are times where I probably say more than I should, but I’d rather err on the side of sharing too much of what I am thinking than not enough.  That way people aren’t making their own assumptions about what I am thinking and feeling, which could be incorrect.  So while I understand the reasons to keep things to oneself sometimes, I wish certain people wouldn’t hold back nearly as often as they do.  That way I won’t need or want to make assumptions about what they are thinking either, or be left wondering.

unexpressed emotions

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4 thoughts on “Holding Back

  1. I can totally relate to your Freud quote. I never say what I’m really thinking (to my husband or family) and I hold everything in and then it will all come spewing out when we’re having an argument and I’m really angry and I’ll say things that I shouldn’t or it comes out all wrong and sounds a lot worse than it is.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I do that too sometimes, but I don’t do it as often as I used to because I have learned to not keep it all inside and to speak my mind at the time. Whenever possible though, I will try to collect my thoughts first so that it is not coming out in an emotional outburst. I have even found that it is more effective to write my husband an email so that he will actually “hear” me because he is not interrupting and talking over me making things worse, and consequently my thoughts can be expressed more coherently.


  2. I like your idea of writing an email. You can express exactly what you want to say in a calm way without interruptions or getting flustered. I have texted large messages before to try and get him to see where I am coming from.


    • Emails are a little easier to save as a draft, edit, add to, and send a little later if necessary than texts. And they can be printed out if need be. I don’t like having all the negative thoughts in my head for a long time, so getting it out in writing helps with that, even if I don’t send the email right away in case I think of something I want to change or add.

      Liked by 1 person

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