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Here are just a few examples…

“I love you, but I wish you were more romantic.”

“I respect you, but you do have a tendency to be wishy-washy.”

“You are beautiful, but you’ve put on a few pounds lately.”

“I want your input, but here’s what I’ve decided to do….”

The “but” in each of these statements essentially wipes away the compliment or appreciation that precedes it. “But” is almost always a word of exclusion and negation. Many of us use it to deliver what we really think with an intention to soften the harshness. Despite this attempt, the emphasis is on what we’re disappointed about or critical of.

Your partner sees right through this. He or she will mostly hear whatever comes after the “but” and is likely to feel confused, hurt and angry because of it.

Watch Your “Buts”

Try this experiment for two or three days: Listen closely to what you say to and about your partner. When you hear yourself use the word “but” (or even if you just think it), notice three things: 1) How you’re feeling, 2) What you really want to say and 3) How your partner reacts. If you realize that you include a lot of “buts” in your talk, you’re not alone. With any damaging habit, it’s necessary to first notice what you’re doing.

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#‎TheDilemma‬- When He Hits You With The Infamous Line “I Love You But…(what usually follows)?  was originally published on