In my "personal/romantic" life, however - I really prefer for my partners to pre-sort their baggage, because at least some of that baggage may relate to me personally
I prefer that too.
But sometimes my partner needs aid to do that very sorting.
I don't always GET my preference in the covenent of romantic relationship. Who else does partner turn to first if not me? Did I not enter this relationship under the agreement of helping to tend their healths? Do I not care about my partner's inner life? I do. So I have to tend and not shirk my duty there to my partner or the relationship. But I still want to hear the request up front.
"I have a problem. I need help sorting myself out. Would you be willing to listen and help me sort even if the problem concerns my relationship to you? Can we Discern Together in a healthy way at this time?"
Then I can assess my willing, the timing, balance against their need, etc. I have to be emotionally available to a reasonable degree. And suck it up (when in the land of reasonable) and not alienate my own partner with emotional distancing or failing to do my partner job. It's a balancing act.
I cannot let my own feelings WHOOSH! up and blind me to my partner's need forever
just because *I* feel crazy and do not like feeling that. Just because I dowanna take on suckage. I'm not a fair weather partner. I have to deal with foul weather sometimes in partnership.
I could say
"I feel crazy right now. I am willing to be emotionally present for you, yes. But at THIS time so I have time to clear my own whooshy first so I can be fit for the job. Is that fair? How's next Tuesday work?"
to negotiate the time. And sometimes Life arranges it so that there IS no best time later. Not only is it IMPORTANT, but it is URGENT TIME RIGHT NOW.
So fine, have to suck it up "come as you are" then. No time to get all dressed up better to face the hurricane. At least you face it together then. My partner gets that perk from me -- because I love them and it is because that's part of the package deal I have with them.
But even a partner -- I will hold accountable to the personal standard agreement
we share. Weather out the Life Whatever Hurricane Storm together, alright. But NO treating me with shenanigans while we're hunkering there together. That's not
part of the deal here.