This Is Why Tough Love Is The Hardest For The Soft-Hearted

Side view of a woman thinking and praying with hands folded
Sherry Zhu / Unsplash

For people with the softest of hearts, tough love doesn’t always come naturally. They aren’t “too fragile” or “too naïve,” they just see the world a bit differently. The soft-hearted are the empaths of the world. They feel with every molecule in their body. When you hurt, they hurt. They have a radar for brokenness; for people who just need to be understood.

The problem is that the soft-hearted can’t bring themselves to live in the binaries of black and white; they feel most at home in the grey areas. They live for complexity and the open-ended mysteries of the world. They aren’t quick to judge or make assumptions; they search for the roots of human connection any chance they get. They have a tendency to constantly dig for something deeper. Taking actions or even words at face value is a struggle for them. This is why people with soft hearts are so reluctant to “telling you as it is”. Because for them, reality isn’t always so cut and dry.

Sure, they could sit here and tell you to get over that boy that clearly doesn’t care about you or to stop feeling sorry for yourself, but the soft-hearted understand that emotions don’t always make sense. They know what the logical things to say to you would be, but they also see that, sometimes we just need space to feel. They won’t tell you to get yourself together and stop crying, they’ll be your shoulder to lean on. They know that there are wounds that even the most powerful of words can’t heal. They understand that getting better is a process. Every time the world tries to callous your skin bit by bit, they will be the ones holding onto the softest parts of your heart while you plummet your way out of the dark.

The truth is, being soft-hearted isn’t a problem at all, but sometimes they have a hard time realizing this. Sometimes they wish they were “tough” just like the rest of them. Sometimes they wish they could see without having to listen to their hearts. Sometimes, they wish they could detach themselves just enough to stop feeling everything so deeply. They often envy those that are so strong and outspoken.

But, although people with soft hearts aren’t always the best at tough love, they are among some of the toughest people you will know. They understand pain because they have seen it firsthand. They have gone through some of the roughest of battles and keep fighting their demons each and every day. They know that the world is tough enough and they don’t want to add to it. Because, above all, the soft-hearted have a knack for seeing the light in the darkest corners of the world. They hold on to hope when most people would let go. They hold on to the truest parts of their souls, no matter how many times others have convinced them to change who they are.

They don’t need to be a little more tough; they are themselves and that will always be more than enough. TC mark

Finding my truth one word (and coffee) at a time.

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