For my Interpersonal Communication project, I was instructed to engage in two separate conversations; one being with an individual I knew but did not feel entirely comfortable with, and the other being with an individual I knew and felt very comfortable with. The first conversation I had took place in my driveway, from 2:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m., on Friday, and it was with my cousin, Shaunda, who I feel very comfortable with, as we have been close for over thirty years. The main topic we discussed was her recent decision to file for a divorce. The second conversation took place on Friday evening, in my garage, with my ex-husband who, even though I have known him for twelve years, I am not comfortable with him at all. The conversation lasted nearly thirty minutes and the main topic was trying to decide whether to home school our son because of the bullying problems at school. We also planned to discuss the option of private school as a possible solution but did not.
During my conversation with my cousin, I was very aware of her emotional state of mind as it was clear to me that I needed to be an active listener so she would know I was supportive and that I cared. I listened to what she had to say with intent and I kept my eyes on hers while she was talking allowing her to know I was paying attention. I was very careful not to say things that could stir up too much emotion for her because I did not want her to driving home in rush hour traffic during, or on the heels of, an emotional meltdown. By maintaining eye contact and listening more than talking, I was able to show her compassion as well as let her know that what happens to her is very important to me. Throughout the conversation, I caught myself nearly let out a big yawn and luckily I caught myself before it came out and was able to stop it. I did not want her to get the impression she was bothering me. I was also careful not to look my phone to check the time...
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