Tag Archives: Communication

Non-Verbal Communication

17 Jan

I feel like I live in this cartoon every damn day.

I spend so much of my time talking and thinking about communication with other people, usually male people.

I’m no expert of course. I think of myself as a life-long learner in the art of human communication.

But there are people who have never been pupils of it and that is a sobering realization for me every single time.

Nobody Ever Explains This To Guys

11 Oct

“Nobody ever explains this to guys!”

Half of emotional intelligence is learned behavior. Raise boys and girls the same and you’ll have a whole generation of people who can communicate more honestly.

Communicating Is Fun

30 Aug


One of the things about communicating with your partner is that the conversation is never over. Even when you kick something down the road it comes back around in time, even if it’s just about it percolating in your own head.

When you’re not afraid to bring up what you want then wheels get put into motion.

Or you hear something you’ve always wanted to hear, or something you didn’t realize you always wanted to hear, or something you never want to hear again.

You may hear that your partner has interest in exploring the same things as you and feel even closer to them.

You may hear that they have interests that will never click with you, that are red flags and that help you get out faster.

You may hear that their erotic imagination doesn’t exist, which could be a turn on or turn off depending on who you are.

You may hear that they’ve never been tested, so you can keep yourself safe.

You may hear that they were recently tested but would love to do whatever will make you feel comfortable.

They may use sexy phrases like “I’m fully in support of however you’d like to manifest this inclination. And on whatever timeline.”

Completely un-ironically.

Talking is… well, it’s just the best.

Work On It

13 May

I broke up with a guy.

Ha, I mean, break up is a strong phrase. We had three dates and some heavy petting. Then some water and a really great conversation about our pasts.

But he’s not the guy for me. I knew it quickly.

The conversation we had just before I booted him was pretty great. We talked through his exes, what they taught him, just stuff.

He took it gracefully. I told him we needed to end the romantic part of our relationship because it wasn’t leading anywhere and then we both giggled and agreed about how much we wanted to stay friends.

We got lunch and texted a bunch in the week that followed. It seems to be going well.

Wanna come over and eat brownies and watch Lemonade?

Uh, yes. Duh.

And then we were back on my couch, he occasionally mumbled comments through the “visual album” which I consistently hushed. No talking allowed.

Then, as I was preparing to kick him out and brush my teeth he snuck in

Thanks for our conversation last week. I’ve never talked like that with anyone before, gotten to examine those things. It was really cool.

You don’t have friends you talk things through with?

Some of my female friends but yeah, none of my guy friends. I talk through their stuff sometimes but for some reason never my own. I’m even nervous right now, having this conversation.

Well in that situation we must continue it!

Guys. What are you doing? Be better friends to each other! It’s depressing and boring when me breaking up with you is the most relevant and vulnerable conversation you’ve ever had. I want to live in a better world than that. I want to live in a more supportive world than that. I want to live in a world where men can have intimate conversations with me without shaking. Where maybe they’ve asked themselves these questions before.

Mae And Me And Our Moms Should Hang

20 Nov

The first time I had sex I called my mom too. Not with such speed though.

When I was younger my mom really loved to watch Gilmore Girls together and fantasize that we could be as open with each other as Rory and Lorelai.

All I ask is that when you do you have sex, you tell me.

With that look that says I’m going to be really disappointed if you don’t.

So when I did it I promised myself that the next time I spoke to her I would tell her.

So I didn’t call her for a while. “A while” for us means about a week. And then when I had to ask her something about flight information or whatever I called her and I made myself make it the first thing I said.

And she was cool enough about it I guess. She asked how it went. My review was not a rave, she was bummed on my behalf. She asked if she could tell my dad, which was sort of a respectful surprise in retrospect.

But it did teach me that she wouldn’t freak out. That if there was something I needed to come to her about then I could.

There have always been a lot of adults I could come to with problems. I’m really grateful for that. And in return I’ve resolved to be one of those people for others, whenever it’s necessary.

How well we do at listening is a daily question but trying is better than not trying.

PS, you should go watch that interview, it’s great.

Hey, Call Your Friend Please!

28 Oct

Hi there, it’s FG here and someone you know has asked me to nudge you to call them.

They really want to hear from you but for whatever reason don’t feel comfortable reaching out to you again/at all. Maybe this person has been socialized to fear being labeled as “clingy” (ahem, female) or maybe they’re just tired of always making the first move. This person is, in fact, the person who sent you this link.

Did you go on a date recently and texted a bunch the next day but haven’t been heard from since?

Did a friend reach out to make plans and you shot back with a helpful “I’m busy this Saturday but I really want to see you.” failing to provide an alternate space/time suggestion?

So stop reading this right now and call the person who sent you this link. Seriously. Call, text, carrier pigeon, owl post, whatever.

I (and the person who sent you this sweet, heartfelt message of longing) feel that I (we) am (are) tired of waiting for you to call. And also tired of being the one who has to do all the reaching out. So we’re calling your bluff. Dial.

When I try three weeks in a row to get brunch with you and you always say “I can’t today but I really miss your face! Kisses!” it feels like you don’t actually want to drink mimosas with me.

When I invite you over four nights in a week and you blow me off because there’s a new episode of Game of Thrones and you really need to watch it with your neighbor, I hear that you don’t want to have a sleep over with me.

So be the person I want you to be and call me.

Love, your friend who sent you this message.

(Inspired by this)

PS, If you fail to respond to this desperate measure then I will assume that indeed, you don’t want to see me. And I will quit exerting a substantial amount of emotional energy trying to schedule you into my life.

How Do You Solve A Problem Like A Handshake?

23 Oct

I was working with a bunch of women the other day (gasp) when one of them said to me “I’ve been so feminist-y lately. Everything has been setting me off!”

I found the statement a little funny but asked to hear more.

“Maybe I’ve just been too lucky, that lately I work with only the best guys but now whenever I work with someone else and they treat me differently it sticks out like a sore thumb.”

So what did someone do lately that upset you?

“So I worked this gig and I was the only woman, which is fine, I’m used to that. But at the end of the day he shook everyone’s hand but hugged me.”

Why do you think this upset you?

“It was different. It made me feel weird, different. Like he assumed I would want to hug instead just because I’m a woman. Or something, I didn’t even really know why he did it.”

Since this conversation I’ve told the story a few times and have gotten a random grab bag of reactions. I’ve been there‘s and I always don’t really know what to do‘s mostly.

The question it stirred in me was this.

We know what to make of the guy who hires her with no questions asked, “She’s the best at this work, so glad she was available.” Good guy, good feminist guy.

We know what to make of the guy who doesn’t hire her because of some visible prejudice of his, “Why do I have to hire her? Is this a quota thing?”

But what do we make of the guys who just make a weird mistake. Who hug you because they assume you’d rather hug. The ones who ask you about what you’re wearing instead of about what new program you’re coding because it just doesn’t leap to mind.

The ones who have been swimming in the patriarchal stream for so long that it’s just how they’ve learned to breathe. The ones that mean no harm. The ones who can relearn, who want to be better.

How do we communicate with them?