Daring Questions for Deepening Honesty and Connection

We all want it, crave it and search for it (even when we think we don’t). And yet many of us don’t really know how to create it – DEEP HONESTY and CONNECTION.

In my then new relationship (it is now 4 years “new”), I knew that what I wanted more than anything was to be able to be completely upfront and honest, even when, no, especially when it was difficult to do so. I also knew I wanted that in return – to hear his deepest truths and honesty even if they were painful to hear.

To foster that level of honesty and intimacy I knew I had to be willing to be radically vulnerable, otherwise I’d never be met there. So, I decided to give it a try. I had been feeling uncomfortable, telling myself he was judging my parenting. One night at dinner I dared to say the following:

“I am telling myself you are judging my parenting and I cannot be in relationship with someone if I am feeling judged so I need to talk about what those are. I would rather know your truth even if you have judgments or criticisms of me. So will you please, tell me all the judgments and criticisms you have of my parenting, me and my kids?

OK, this did feel a bit risky and yet I knew the pain of thinking he was judging me was greater than anything he could possibly say!

To his credit, he did share his truth with me. And not surprisingly, his truth was not nearly as judgment or critical of me as I feared! In fact, it was not judgmental or critical at all! His invited feedback was filled with love, curiosity and concern. So rather than feeling judged, I felt held and deeply cared for.

This is now part of a commitment we have made to each other and the relationship – to be radically honest and vulnerable. What we have found is that doing so has deepened our intimacy, connection and FUN! I suspect the fun is deeper because when the trust runs deep so does the ability to really let go, relax and be yourself – and really there’s nothing more fun than that, is there?

I invite you to risk asking for feedback from an open, vulnerable, curious place. And then, please share how that goes!

In support and service ~




Cat J. Zavis is an Attorney, Mediator and Coach for Divorced and Divorcing Parents. She has conducted workshops and trainings in Nonviolent CommunicationSM for hundreds of parents, lawyers, teachers, students, spiritual centers and professionals. In 2009, she was awarded a Peace Builder Award for her business. Her passion is helping parents learn how to communicate and work with their former partner or spouse so they and their children not just survive divorce, but thrive.






Speak Your Mind