We are not responsible for someone else’s feelings

We are not responsible for someone else's feelings - girlintherapy

We are not responsible for someone else’s feelings

I finally sent my soon-to-be brother-in-law a text telling him how I feel toward his behaviour and attitude toward me. I composed it carefully, ensuring that I used “I” statements and did not accuse him in any way.

I now have to leave it; however he chooses to respond is entirely HIM, nothing to do with me. (Let go and let god; do my part and let go of the outcome)

I did not understand this at first, when I first started recovery. Only until recently.

Anyone can get offended or upset with ANYTHING someone else says, even if it were not intentionally offending, or even if it is, but it has everything to do with the receiver than the giver.

If someone says crap about you, you may be hurt initially, but if you’re sure of yourself and your value and the truth, you’d brush it aside, because you know it’s just people saying shit.

Likewise, people tend to think that they’ve to walk on eggshells around people all the time because they think their actions affect everyone – they want to make sure no one gets hurt, no one gets angry with them, no one rejects them. But this is impossible. No one can cater to everyone.

This is something I had to learn and am still learning.

My usual mode: what if I say this and upsets this person? What if I say it in another way instead? How do I make sure they don’t get mad at me?

I’m not used to saying how I feel, because I wasn’t allowed a voice growing up. And so now I struggle with saying my part, and fear people disagreeing or rejecting me. Which is what CAN happen. I just gotta agree to disagree, and accept that not everyone will agree with my view.

I fear rejection and shame from others. I fear how others see me (Low Self Esteem). I want others to like me. These are my Codependent traits.

I think it is growth that I ascertained which was his business, which was mine; which was his part to play, which was my part that I can control. I used I-statements; I said how “I” feel, not how he should act, etc.

Let’s see how this pans out. May my Higher Power see me through.


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  1. keepwatchingkatie profile image
    keepwatchingkatie says:

    You handled it perfectly! You are so right!! We have to get our voice back and not be afraid of how someone interprets how “WE feel” if they lash out, that’s on them. No one has control over how we feel but us! Great job

  2. girlintherapy profile image
    girlintherapy says:

    @arak_anavrin @yellow.ledbetter88 My husb saw the text I sent. He thinks there’s no coming back from it, and we will all never speak to each other again. I don’t have such a pessimistic view on it, I’m open to whatever happens next. It will just speak of the other party’s character – be it good or bad. And this is all out of my hands – I’ve done my part. Everything from here on I have no control over…

  3. girlintherapy profile image
    girlintherapy says:

    @arak_anavrin Wow, it’s uncanny we’re going through something similar. If your sis doesn’t take it well, it’s really all her. And if she tries to assign any blame, please know that there is nothing wrong with telling people how You feel. If they can’t take Your opinion of Yourself, then something somewhere is not right… with them. You’ve done Your part – which is to say how You feel; we can’t control how others choose to respond. I used to bear the feelings of my whole family – if they got angry I always blamed myself; should I have said this instead or that, why did I say that – I should’ve known better, etc… But NO more. Enough. My mom used to make me responsible for HER feelings, with a lot of mind games, manipulation, passive aggression and emotional blackmail. Time to change all that with gradually improving mental + emotional health!!!

  4. arak_anavrin profile image
    arak_anavrin says:

    relate so much, and all so true~! simple yet very challenging. going through same thing w/ my sis~ in fact composed a curated letter ~all “I” statements offering my experience and careful not to attack, just like yours? w/ people like sis though ANYTHING~ANY dialogue about anything she receives/reads as an attack. So same over here~ waiting to see how she responds, how this all pans out

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