Kindness Does Not Have to Be Above Assertiveness

Kindness Does Not Have to Be Above Assertiveness

Last update: 13 December, 2016

Right now you might think “Really? Are you telling me that kindness can be a problem in a relationship? I’d like mine to be like that!” Well, I reaffirm, because as the singer and spokesperson Ricardo Arjona says, “that stupid fear of seeing yourself old and without a partner makes you choose with your head what should be done with the heart.” That’s when we make a mistake.

As incredible and absurd as it may seem, kindness and any misunderstood feeling or emotion can be a serious problem in a relationship. Even the most noble intention can be distorted and transformed into pain, rage, misunderstanding…

“That’s why we will never be the perfect pair, the postcard, if we cannot accept that only in arithmetic is two born of one plus one”

-Julio Cortazar-

What does science say?

To understand the problems that kindness can bring to a relationship, it is good to know the study that a team of researchers from the University of Toronto did a few years ago in this regard.

The research showed that kindness can be a serious problem in a relationship if one of the members has the inability to voice objection. The relationship suffers if one partner chooses kindness over taking care of his or her own needs.


Humans have a need to socialize. In addition, we are empathic to a greater or lesser extent. However, this extreme situation can lead to a member of the couple deciding to accept a situation that is not tolerable, simply by avoiding conflict.

Throughout the study, researchers found that certain profiles with excessive empathy and a high degree of friendliness suffered serious problems in choosing a partner because of their inability to reject for fear that they would later feel guilty.

“People who enjoy satisfying and stable relationships are balanced beings. They are not looking for someone to fill a gap. They recognize their own worth”

– Andrew Matthews-

Kindness turned into a relationship problem

It is evident that the excess of empathy and kindness can lead to bad decisions in relationships. If prolonged over time, it can end in serious illness and psychological disorders. It is therefore important to take certain measures.

Although it may seem unusual, it is important to know how to say “no”. Always courteous, but without excess. A timely rejection can be a major mental health exercise. Not everyone knows how to say no, but it is necessary to do so to avoid uncomfortable situations.

Kindness in a couple can be associated in many cases with feelings of guilt. Putting certain interests of your own before those of your partner, always within a limit, is not a cause for guilt.


There are also cases where friendliness in a partner is associated with low self-esteem. Seriously helpful people can actually be hiding insecurity. They prefer to accept everything to ensure that they accepted.

If we look closely, guilt, inability to say “no” or low self-esteem are always associated with profiles with a lack of self-assurance. In this sense, there are serious cases that must be studied by a professional.

Can these situations be avoided?

A relationship should never be a pit of insecurities and problems. Although it cannot be perfect, a relationship with the loved one should be considered as a situation that improves your quality of life. Otherwise, it may be a good idea to rephrase the terms of the situation. Here are some signs you have this type of relationship:

  • If you are a person who gives in unselfishly constantly, but you do not receive adequate answers about it.
  • If you feel that someone abuses your kindness and good treatment, maybe you should rethink the situation.
  • Healthy kindness is often accompanied by optimism. However, your partner may feel discomfort in this regard. You may have the image that your partner is naive or even “dumb” for their excess of goodness. If this reaches an extreme degree, there is reason to doubt.
  • If you notice that your partner does not take you seriously and thinks that your kindness simply responds to a pose of false happiness, you may not be with the right person.
  • If your partner does not reinforce your personality and optimism and becomes a source of insecurity for you.

In short, if something as beautiful and admirable as kindness can become a source of unhappiness and relationship problems, it is clear that something is failing in that relationship.

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This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.