“Would you just shut up for a minute and listen to me!” I shouted angrily. I drew in a long breath and let it out. Then, quietly, “please?”
Sometimes all we really want is for someone we love to hear us out. To not interrupt. To not offer interpretation. To do nothing other than to intensely focus on us, and to hang on every word we say.
Hearing is not sufficient. It’s not enough for the other person to remain silent until we’ve stopped talking. What we want, what we need, is for that person to listen and to understand the feelings behind the words. Most importantly, to allow us the luxury of feeling our feelings.
And then, perhaps, when silence fills the air, to tell us that everything will be all right. We might be angry, afraid, frustrated, or scared right now, but whatever the situation is, everything will be all right. Even if life will never be the same.
What we need to know in those moments , is that we are accepted; we will not be abandoned, no matter what. We need to feel it in the core of our being.
When we listen to another person in this manner, we are saying, “You are loved. You are important to me. I accept you just the way you are. I hear for you, and I am here for you.”