Quote from EMDR and Dissociation: The Progressive Approach
Often when clients come into therapy one of the first things we do is start working on language, although that is not what we call it. Sometimes it is not so much developing a new language as it is making sure that the words, we use have the same meaning.
Often times I find that clients do not know or have a language for emotions, much less skills in how to manage them when they come up.
Sometimes they come from a family in which big feelings and all-or-nothing thinking predominate and we have to work on developing an awareness for shades of gray and then having a language for this experience.
If a child grew up in a home in which neglect and invalidation was the norm, they may not have the language for expressing, care, love and affection.
This is not their fault, and it is something that can be learned. But it is important to have patience for one another when we come from different backgrounds and different up-bringing.