When was the last time someone truly listened to you?
I think the better question is “When was the last time someone truly heard you?” People listen to me everyday and I am sure others could say the same. As a mother my children listen to me (hopefully). As a wife my husband listens to me and I to him. Listening can be rather easy. Hearing is different. To me, hearing means understanding and maybe even connecting on an emotional level. For example, sometimes when I am in an argument with my husband it is hard for me to feel validated unless I feel I’ve been heard. Otherwise I feel as though the words I’ve spoken have meant nothing. I believe that is why you meet people who can talk & talk, have a huge circle of friends and still feel utterly alone. Or why couples who have been married for 20 years can be strangers to each other. We can listen all day but are we really hearing?
To the single mom constantly complaining about how her deadbeat ex won’t help and how frustrating it is to do everything by herself. To some it can be seen as just that, complaining, you can nod and say “I am sorry he won’t help”. Or what she might really need to hear is “Yeah raising kids is already so hard when both parents are involved, I can’t imagine doing it by yourself. I hope you know you are doing a really great job and if you need any help at all please call me.”
Honestly I don’t remember the last time I was truly heard. It was more then likely by my husband and probably after an argument. And I I know there have been times where I have felt heard by one of my friends. But it does feel few and far between sometimes. Is this because we have become way to consumed with our own lives that we forget about what others might be going through. We merely listen, maybe give an appropriate response and then move on? I’m guilty. Maybe now that I’ve dwelt on it I can change that.