Thich Nhat Hanh's writings were recommended to me by a fellow participant of the Mindful Self-Compassion Intensive program I attended in Kenya. I read this book in mid-2018. It's a very short book with simple statements of what love is. He proposes that understanding is the nature of love.
Understanding someone's suffering is the best gift you can give another person. Understanding is love's other name. If you don't understand, you can't love.
To understand, we need to listen. That person may be our partner, our friend, our sibling, or our child. You can ask, "Dear one, do you think that I understand you enough? Please tell me your difficulties, your suffering, and your deepest wishes."
Compassion means to "suffer with" another person, to share their suffering. When you love someone, you should have the capacity to bring relief and help him suffer less.
When you suffer, you may want to go to your room, lock the door, and cry. The person who hurt you is the last person you want to see. Even if he tries to approach you, you may still be very angry. But to get relief, you have to go to the person you love, the one who just hurt you very deeply, and ask for help. Become yourself one hundred percent. Open your mouth and say with all your heart and with all your concentration that you suffer and you need help.
Here are three sentences that may help.
First: "My dear, I am suffering. I am angry, and I want you to know it."
The second is: "I am doing my best." This means you are practising mindful breathing and walking, and you are refraining from doing or saying anything out of anger.
The third is: "Please help me."