It's not for the faint of heart.

Welcome to my slightly silly, often odd, and mostly messy life.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I know you hear me... but are you listening?

Sometimes I think listening is a lost art form.  I know people hear me, but it seems that they only hear a part of what I'm saying.  Or they assume facts that I've never shared or said.  Or they plain old ignore what I've said.  Mostly these days it's my kids... and lets be honest that's what kids, especially teens, do.  I get that.  It doesn't make it any less annoying though.

BLT and I run into this.  He's not trying to be malicious.  I know this, but it's one of those annoying communication issues between men and women.  In an attempt to be supportive, and because he loves me, he says things like, "I think you're perfect just the way you are."  He doesn't hear ME and absorb what I'm feeling when I say, "I'm unhappy with the the way that I am.  I want to be healthier.  I want to be thinner. I want to feel sexy."   His answer is always, "You are sexy"  but it's not about how he perceives me.  It's about how I feel in my own skin.  It's how I feel when were intimate. It's the image I see in the mirror each day.

I've run into this a LOT with my former in-laws.  They assume things I haven't said.  They don't hear the kids and I when we say that we don't want my X in our lives.  They don't hear me when I say that the kids and I are finally happy, that we truly are at home here in this small town, loving our house and the family we've turned into with BLT.  They hear what they want. They focus on the minutia and miss the big picture. 

Maybe that's just communication in general?  Maybe I'm expecting too much?  Maybe I'm not being clear? George Bernard Shaw once said that the biggest problem with communication was the impression that it has it taken place.  I think he's onto something there.


  1. Communication AND perception are both based on what we or others want to see and hear. It's limited. Others can't feel or see what we feel or see. It's impossible.

    Listen to yourself and make changes for yourself. Then, perhaps, they'll get it. Or not.

    Do it for you.

  2. Men can only do one thing at a time. If I am talking, I am not listening and If I am listening and not talking, you actually are getting through.

    We are also easily distracted. If you cross your legs, lip your lips, or you flash a bit of cleavage, rest assured that at least 3 of your last 20 words were not heard.

    First time visitor. I like your blog so far.....

  3. People hear what they want to hear. If you're not going to say what they already think, you may have to change your delivery.

    Guys are also fixers. First thing we want to do is fix what ever it is you're having issues with. We have an incredibly difficult time just listening, accepting and not being proactive about it. (Internally, I think that if I "fix" the situation, maybe she'll stop complaining about it. Please, God!!)

    On the other hand, if I think something really doesn't need fixing, I'm not going to invest a lot of time or energy in it.

    But that's me.

  4. aren't hearing him either ;). If we take the "fixer" explanation he sees the problem as you need to be told he finds you sexy and attractive. He is being sincere and saying, "I love you just the way you are". You might have to rethink what you want out of that conversation because it sounds like in its current form it has the potential to get frustrating for both of ya.

    You've hit on so many levels of communication in just one post. on the inlaw front they are looking through the lens of bias towards the x. Plus I think it is hard for some people to accept that someone else's idea of happiness could look different than theirs. They saw you living a much more material wealthy sort of lifestyle and so now, this more simple lifestyle may seem unthinkable... I don't know. Just analyzing from the computer chair again ;).