I recently wrote about how most people don’t listen to understand, they listen to reply
Most people often don’t listen to understand, they listen to reply.
How many times, have you found yourself in a discussion with someone only for them to reply therefore constantly…
Today, I’ve been reading another story here on Medium from a fellow Medium writer. Thank you Synthia S.
One of the points Synthia makes in her article is
When we talk with others, we have a tendency to want to over-share. We sometimes like to regale stories of similar tragedies, but all it does is make the other person feel like their problems are inconsequential to yours — so they close themselves, and never tell you about the topic again.
I’ve recently experienced this with, well, a so called friend as she has become to me. I first started noticing it from her a few weeks ago when I was having to sleep on my lounge since December 24th due to water damage to my apartment from upstairs apartments.
The repair process is almost completed and I’m happy to say I am able to sleep back in my bedroom and bed now as of only last week. I’m just waiting for my ceiling in my bedroom to be repainted now.
But for those few weeks that did lead into two months waiting. I had to wait for repairs to be done and I didn’t feel like being an emotional punching bag to anyone,so I just kept to myself.
So anyway this so called friend acted all concerned in the beginning and gave me the impression of a listening ear when she would ring me.
Only recently a few weeks ago she rang and asked how I was and the process was still going on and I had repair work happening so I was okay physically just sleep deprived because I wasn’t sleeping well on my lounge.
So I told her I was okay just feeling a bit down.
She replied with “Yeah well not as bad as my day i’ve had”
And then she went on to tell me of a repeated drama she has going on. I sat silent. I wanted to hang up but I don’t like hanging up on people unless it’s a telemarketer.
But I did hold the phone away from my ear therefore I could hear her talking but not what she was saying because I had heard it numerous times and only she can fix the issue no one else.
So when it came time for me to speak I told her again she can at least fix her problem, no one else can.
She replied “Yeah I know”
I rolled my eyes and shook my head. I’ve heard it all before.
It left me feeling like she wasn’t calling me to see how I was, she was calling to download on me again.
Granted she may not be consciously aware of it so I do give her the benefit of the doubt. But I am starting to notice little things she does like cutting me off mid-sentence and bringing up the past a lot.
But when I’ve tried to talk to her about what I’m noticing she gets defensive with me and starts to put me down to make herself feel better.
Which has resulted in my not ringing her. Sometimes even if she rings me and I see it’s her on my phone I don’t answer if I don’t feel like it. Lately she’s been ringing me to download her problems.
I know everyone has problems and yes it’s healthy to talk about problems. But it’s not practical if no solution can be found.
The problem is she’s chronically lonely and resents me because although I live on my own too, I do have things in my life to occupy me, whether it be writing here on Medium, or reading, or watching a movie.
I don’t like being bored so there’s sometimes I like to rearrange my kitchen cupboards and go on a cleaning binge when I get the urge just to keep me occupied and productive.
So being an active listener is a great asset to have, but it can also be a magnet to people who download too. So it’s finding that balance for yourself that’s important and that’s something I’m still working on.
Recently I’ve made myself unavailable to this friend and I told her I was going out yesterday so couldn’t talk. But I did tell her I’d be home today if she wanted to ring me.
So yes she rang me, but I made it clear I had things to do so I couldn’t talk for anymore than an hour.
I knew it would be nothing new that she would tell me, so that’s why I’ve put a time limit on our phone conversations now as well as making myself less available to her which has helped me feel better in myself.