Before you tell someone to “go talk to Bree” please know: I strongly prefer they have been receiving this eZine for a while, first. So don’t refer them to my conversation services. First, just forward a post! If it’s one for you (like this one) maybe add a few lines about what you learned and how you’ll lay off or do something differently.
I’m sure he’d appreciate you being disclosing, instead of telling him to!
3 Bad Reasons to Refer a Smart Guy to Someone Like Me:
Bad reason #1: You want him to “see the error of his ways.”
Alas, that’s the opposite of my job – often these guys are plenty hard on themselves, and they actually need space and time to complete constructive thoughts on their own without breaking themselves down. I actually imbue them with self-love.
Bad reason #2: You hope for encouragement/validation from me.
I don’t talk to ANYONE about clients – even potential clients – because I’m a woman and we’re infamous for gossip as it is. I may be the only non-religious non-therapist he might grow to trust! I’m not gambling that away to encourage you to refer him.
Bad reason #3: You want him back, new and improved.
Who put the idea in your head that was even possible? If you don’t like what you see, you may want to consider hiring someone of your own to talk to. We don’t ask adult trees to have grown differently, do we?
Summary: You wanting a different version of the past? Yeah… That’s a bad reason.
Now this is honest, and I can appreciate the magnitude of grief you might be experiencing!!! This might even be the real reason behind 1, 2, and/or 3. Still, I am not the person to involve in your process. I’m here for your smart guy, and for him alone.
Five Possibly Good Reasons – IF Explored Deeper
Possibly good reason #1: Are you sad the world is missing out on his brilliance?
This is one that can go down really well, if novel. If it’s a broken record, however, please remove the needle.
Possibly good reason #2: Are you sad the world is missing out on his love?
If you can recall times when he’s been a great brother, son, partner, friend, and you can emphasize how it made YOU happy to see his eyes light up, or his back straight with pride, you’re making an honest, implicit request for him to do whatever he needs to to feel loved by you and others again. IF you can manage to join him in 10% of his grief or whatever he’s in now, WHILE describing his belovedness, it shows him implicitly that he’s already loved right here, right now.
Possibly good reason #3: Are you hopeful he’ll be a father/partner/just be happy again someday?
This one is a lot like #2. Please reflect back his own aspirations to him, without adding any of your own, since those can be perceived as additional pressure which, perhaps against all appearances, he does NOT need.
Also, be sure to read this post on worry, first.
Possibly good reason #4: Are you worried for his next partner?
If you’re safe now but he needs support to become safer for whoever he loves next, I may be able to help. I only have to ring a bell if someone is currently in danger, and don’t have to share anything in any courtroom.
Often guys don’t realize there’s anyone to confide in who won’t report, psychoanalyze, or label them. I do none of those with my clients. I help them.
This is one that can go down really well if you actually tell him about a few things you love about him and which he likes about himself, even if only secretly. Things he can be proud of and ‘own.’ Things he can do again regardless of age.
Of course, it’s hard to go over these things without going back to him. Please emphasize how much you know he’s not safe for you, but you hope he’ll make someone really, really happy and be able to keep it good.
Possibly good reason #5: He doesn’t need it.
It just looks like fun.
In Summary: Be clear.
Any reason based on the past is probably not cool.
Any reason based on present discontent or on fear of the future probably sucks, too.
But a well-examined, self-reflective reason to forward him one article, then another, and then telling him he’ll have to subscribe himself if he hasn’t yet by the third one…
a reason that’s not got a huge push or pull to it…
a reason that comes from your unburdened heart…
THAT’s a good reason!
If you’re not sure
Ask yourself: are you unattached to the outcome?
I don’t mean “ignore your hopes or despair.”
I don’t mean “try to care less about him or what he does.”
What I do mean?
Ask yourself what your motivation is to forward him an article:
Is it present-tense?
Is it calm and confident?
Is it unconditional – meaning you won’t be hopeless or elated depending on whether he follows through?
Is it free of advice?
If you can share information like this, you’re probably in a good place:
“This is the 3rd and last article from Bree I’m forwarding you. Please decide for yourself whether to subscribe. I like her writing because she has a lot of ____ with/towards/from guys in your position, and I feel a little more ___ reading her stuff.”
Thanks for passing along the love!