Part 1: DEAR MAN

The second set of DBT skills, I pulled on to have my conversation with B is called GIVE. This is a skill to use to keep your relationship. GIVE can be used in combination with DEAR MAN as GIVE is very much about your behaviour during a conversation.


Here is how I filled out the GIVE worksheet.

Describe ways to be Gentle with your communication:

I will speak calmly, let B speak and acknowledge what he says that is relevant.

Describe what you will do or say to act Interested:

I will listen, nod, learn forward with my body to demonstrate listening.

Plan to Validate the other person’s thoughts/feelings/behaviours by saying:

“I understand it is difficult because you are not working.”

Describe any strategies for keeping the conversation light with an Easy Manner:

I will smile and say “I love you.”


As with DEAR MAN, having GIVE all planned out eliminates the guessing. I planned ahead of time exactly what I could do to go keep my relationship. Even when I began to slip and cried, I remembered that I wrote down that I would speak calmly so I kept my voice down. This isn’t to say that you can’t cry, you can, just my crying was leading into pure emotion and I needed to keep control. I also kept reminding myself of DEAR MAN and Described, Expressed and Asserted while remaining relatively calm.

For the worksheet click here.

For a detailed description of GIVE click here.

Is GIVE something you could see using in your life? Have you used GIVE?


18 thoughts on “DBT: DEAR MAN, GIVE, FAST (Part 2)

  1. at some point in the past, i went through the entire process of learning DBT, but never really quite got the hang of using it, so it settled to the floor of my brain collecting dust. but thanks to your recent posts on DBT i am now actually beginning to see how youre supposed to use it, and when. it makes much more sense now. i hope i actually use it.

    • Were you doing DBT on your own? I bought an amazing DBT work book a few years back and was learning on my own (with an unsupportive boyfriend) and now that I am in the class it is making more sense and i’m being held accountable. Reading “Healing from Borderline Personality Disorder” by Debbie Corso was also a massive help because she provided solid examples. DBT isn’t difficult to understand but if you’re already having issues with what it wants you to practice then examples are fantastic. I’m not putting down learning DBT on your own; for many it’s the only way because of how expensive or rare the therapy is. I just noticed a difference in how I’m approaching it and how I feel about it (I also have a supportive partner this time!).

      Keep practicing. I did use any skills in two recent situations or I had a little freak out and then recovered using them. You just need to practice.

      Thanks for your comment and good luck!!!

    • That was amazing! Thanks for sharing the link! I tried to have those dialogues with my ex-boyfriend but no matter what it would go like this…

      Me: I really need help keeping up with the dishes.
      Him: You said when you moved in that they would be your job.
      Me: I said while I was in school and not working I would take on more of the house chores but now I am working so I need help.
      Him: You just don’t want to take responsibility, you’re lazy.

      I tried to negotiate, teach and accept but really, unless your partner is willing no positive conversation is possible. It’s great when a couple can watch a video like in the link and really commit to improving the communication in their relationship. It shows a great amount of respect.

      Thank you for your support! I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off of me since starting DBT a few weeks ago and I just want to share it and hopefully people can use some of it. DBT can be hard to find so I want to do my part to make parts of it available!

  2. Pingback: DBT: DEAR MAN, GIVE, FAST (Part 3) | Pride in Madness

  3. Pingback: DBT Skills: Onto the Next Module | Pride in Madness

  4. Pingback: DBT Skills: Listening to Emotions | Pride in Madness

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