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· unashamed perv
1,786 Posts
I try to understand how they're feeling, questions I ask are to help me understand them. If you want to disagree or criticise:

-somebody's feelings are always real to them. It's not helpful to say "that's just stupid, why are you upset over that?" It may be appropriate to gently point out when a feeling they have is irrational.

- Criticism should be specific and helpful; never say "you're a selfish person," but rather "that was a selfish thing to do."

-Always sandwich a negative between two positives, such as "you're usually really kind. I think what you did was selfish, but nobody's perfect, and it's good that you realised something was wrong, you're very perceptive."

I ain't no shrink, but that's my two pence worth :)
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