How to Ask for What You Need When You Feel Unseen

I'm Michelle!

Master Life Coach, Wife & Mom, Certified Nervous System Fitness Expert, Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, Podcaster, Attorney, and Deep Believer in Curiosity and Self-Compassion

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Do you ever feel like all your hard work goes unnoticed? You keep the whole ship afloat, but no one seems to notice or thank you? You’re not alone. This feeling of being undervalued and unseen is something many of us experience, whether it’s at home, at work, or in our relationships.

The Invisible Woman Syndrome

Picture this: you go to work all day, but no one really listens to your ideas, and you’re overlooked for that promotion. You get a new haircut or buy a new dress for date night, but your husband’s response is underwhelming or non-existent. It’s this pervasive feeling of being undervalued and not noticed.

A few years ago, I felt this way a lot, especially at home. I did everything for everyone, but no one seemed to notice. My husband never even thanked me for the sacrifices I made to bring our children into the world. This thought crossed my mind and it upset me.

As I started thinking these things, I noticed I began judging myself for feeling this way. I thought, “I’m a strong, powerful woman. It’s my honor and pleasure to care for my family. I do this because it’s important to me, not because I’m seeking validation.” Yet, I couldn’t shake the need to stop being unseen and unnoticed. I blamed it on my ego and wondered why it was so important for my kids to thank me, even though they were just toddlers.

Self-Compassion and Understanding Your Needs

Over time, I grew in my consciousness and started to have more compassion for myself. I realized it’s natural to want to feel seen and appreciated. This isn’t wrong, weak, or selfish. We all have a desire to be valued, and it feels like love when we are.

Yes, we have needs. We are allowed to have those needs. Yes, we are encouraged to express those needs. But how we express this need to be seen and appreciated matters.

Getting passive-aggressive with your husband because he didn’t notice your new haircut won’t serve you well. Resenting your partner for not recognizing the mental load you carry won’t help either. And having an outburst with your kids because you’re tired of cleaning up their toys won’t get you far—especially when they’re only 2 and 3 years old.

Communicating Your Needs Effectively

So, what do we do? We learn to communicate our needs in a way that is authentic, accountable, and doesn’t put the other person on the defensive. How? By using Non-Violent Communication (NVC). I delve into this topic in episode 19 of my podcast, where I provide a formula for having productive and loving conversations.

In that episode, I also created a resource with a list of human needs. Sometimes, as women, we’re so disconnected from our needs that it’s hard to pinpoint why we’re upset. This list can help you identify and articulate your needs, like feeling unseen.

When I first started practicing NVC, it felt awkward. I had a hang-up that asking for appreciation would cheapen it. But I got curious about that position and allowed myself to explore it. I realized I was judging it before even trying it.

The first few times were clunky, but I began asking my husband to notice me. It was uncomfortable at first, but it was worth it. I shared my feelings vulnerably, without blaming or exaggerating. I said things like, “When I spend hours setting up appointments for the kids and no one thanks me, I feel resentful. I realize I have a need to be seen, so I’m going to start asking for it.”

This approach didn’t offend my husband. In fact, the more I asked in a loving way, the less I had to ask. He began to see and acknowledge me more naturally. This growth happened because I took responsibility for asking for my needs to be met.

Take the First Step

If this resonates with you, listen to episode 19 and give it a shot. Ask for your needs to be met, own it, and communicate it. If you’re skeptical, let it marinate. But if you’re feeling resentful, tired, sad, and overlooked, what’s the harm in giving this a genuine try? Nothing changes if nothing changes, right?

We are women. We are moms. We do so much. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be seen and acknowledged for it. You’ve got this, and I’m here cheering you on every step of the way.

Have a question you’d love Michelle to answer on the podcast? “Ask Michelle a Question.” Click this link, record your message, hit send, and I’ll answer it in a future episode!

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You my friend, are called to a life of fullness and abundance - no matter how wild this motherhood journey is. It's time to trade the exhaustion and overwhelm for peace and joy.  No more hot-mess express.  I've got you. 

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Let's redefine what's possible in motherhood.

cool as a cucumber, ENNEAGRAM 3, book hoarder, MATCHA LATTE LOVER, growth seeker, accountability partner, and your biggest cheerleader

I'm Michelle.
Your Master Coach.

You my friend, are called to a life of fullness and abundance - no matter how wild this motherhood journey is. It's time to trade the exhaustion and overwhelm for peace and joy.  No more hot-mess express.  I've got you. 

Learn more

Let's redefine what's possible in motherhood.


Cheers to starting your day right!  Make yourself comfortable and get ready to dig in, learn, and most importantly, take action!

You got it, Mama!

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