My Sunday night was to say the least intense.
From Sunday to Monday I was chatting with the German over Skype to fix an issues that had gotten out of hand. Our conversation got quite tough and I kept insisting on support. It lasted for about three hours until 2.30am. We finally managed to calm each other down.
My dear friend, the Bald One was visiting that weekend. He was sitting next to me watching something on TV while I was on skype with the German.
The final thing I remember making me crack was my current fear of loss. The German started seeing someone and with my dad being sick I started to tumble into a spiral of sorrow and fear.
My friend has been going through some stuff as well with a friendship of his. I offered my advice and help. The friend the Bald One was having issues with has a tendency of denial and aggression. In a phone conversation they had a few weeks back or so the Bald One had to listen to lots of insults and criticism with no real point to the conversation except that he apparently was a bad friend.
We both then talked about random stuff like denial, passive aggressiveness and conversations. He asked me the question who has control in a conversation? The one who is talking?
Well the one who is talking is giving out information and dominates the current tone. The information is what leads the conversation mostly. The words said are what have impact but only if they are heard. Someone might ramble while someone else is listening, or just thinking in their own head what they want to say.
The one sitting in silence might make the other one ramble, might make them insecure about what they say.
The Bald One then pointed out that the one asking the questions might be the one in control. If you were to ask someone if they loved you, are you in control? In the case of me and the German it was me. I wanted support and I wanted to hear what I already know. I just needed to ask for it since the German is not as straightforward with his emotions as I am.
But if you were to ask that to a new love and were not sure of the answer? Their answer will have the most impact and might define how you will feel.
Anyone can be in control in a conversation. It is not the communication that defines it but the dynamic between the people involved. Their relation and agenda in the situation drives the communication, verbal and non verbal. Sometimes a look says more than a thousand words.
Of course the one that shouts and won’t let anyone else speak, the words of the one being aggressive for the sole purpose of hurting the ones listening tends to take control without asking for it. Often these people are hurt and don’t dare to express how they really feel (that is how I used to lead intense discussions and it was mostly my motivation). Projecting hurt onto someone in a violent or angry way will rarely get you anywhere but into prison.
It took me a lot to learn how to communicate better and I am still not that good at it. I am great at leading others, advising, making them feel better and helping. I suck at asking for help and support in times of need.
So to answer the Bald One questions: Like most things depends on the circumstances 😉
Ah isn’t it beautiful how often that is the most generally true answer one can give ?!
Love and Be Loved,