Sunday, May 11, 2008

Just Listen

When I talk to my friends about things that are going on in my life I don't expect answers or solutions. In fact, I don't usually appreciate them. I just need to talk. I usually know exactly what's going on and what needs to be done. This is my life after all. I just need to vent or hear my thoughts out loud.

I try my best to do this for my friends too. It used to be much more difficult. I hurt when the people I care about hurt, and I used to want to solve everything. I find that listening is appreciated more, and if they really need advice my friends will ask for it.

Even if I share similar characteristics to you, what you might find a workable solution may not necessarily apply to me. I am my own person and make my own choices so it bothers me if someone feels that they are responsible for giving me "bad advice" and what occurs afterwards. In no uncertain terms, is that true. For one thing, if you give me advice it doesn't necessarily mean that I'm taking it. For another, by apologizing for the advice you gave, it is as if you are assuming direct responsibility for my actions.

I love my friends, but I resent when they do that. If I choose to do something, it may not be because of your advice even if you did mentioned it.

I know I'm a little bit touchy about this. It might come from the fact that I lived under someone's control for quite some time and had to work very hard to break free of it.

Thanks for listening.


Leora said...

Active listening...sort of repeating what the person is saying in different words...but not necessarily offering advice.

Usually, one just wants the other person to "get it", not necessarily give advice on how to move forward.

Does it feel like I "listened" to what you wrote and echoed back some of it, with my own interpretation and perception added?

come running said...

I feel heard. Thanks for listening. ;)