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I’m not listened to

When we feel we are not being listened to it can make us feel angry and frustrated. When we don’t listen to each other it makes talking about the difficult stuff even harder and things just go round in circles.

  • They don’t understand what it’s like for me
  • They never listen to my point of view
  • They always talk over me when I’m trying to explain something
  • They always have to be right
  • There’s no negotiating with them
  • They constantly jump to conclusions and think the worst
  • I feel invisible
  • I get really angry
  • I feel frustrated
  • I feel like there’s no point
  • I shut down and can’t be bothered trying
  • I feel like they don’t trust me
I’m not listened to illustration

What can I do to make things better?

  • What do you need?

    Try to explain to the other person what you need and why rather than what the problem is. Example:


    Problem

    “You always have to be right, it’s always your way!”

    Need

    “I need you to consider my point of view and at least think about it.”

  • See it from their side

    Try and see the situation from the other person’s shoes.


    Person 1

    “You just assume it was my fault. He started it.”

    Person 2

    “You two are always fighting. I’ve lost count of who started it. I just want some peace and quiet in the house.

  • Be honest

    The best way to get someone to listen to you is to let them know you are listening to them. Example:


    “I understand the reasons why you want me to stay on at school, but here are the reasons I want to do something else …”

  • Consider alternatives

    Consider lots of options to solve the problem.


    Being listened to means that the other person needs to trust what you’re saying. We build trust in relationships by being honest with each other and admitting when we do stuff that we shouldn’t.

Time and Space

Finding a good time and place to talk with your family about stuff is important.

  • Make sure you won’t be interrupted by anyone else.

  • Choose a time where you are both around - not 5 minutes before one of you has to run out the door.

  • It helps if you’re not already angry with each other about something else.

Conflict Resolution and Mediation

After working through the steps above and considering your own situation, you may find it helpful to know more about conflict resolution and mediation.

Sam is much happier now that he and his mum know how to deal with their arguments better.

  • If you get together and talk about it, I've often seen people come up with much better solutions themselves.

    Paul Burns, Mediator

  • We still have our arguments, but we deal with them a lot better now.

    Kerry, Sam's Mum

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