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Themba Simelane
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Crazy Parenting Style_Part 6

18 March 2014, 09:40

Silent conversations

As a teenage son to my single mother; Nkhaudiseng, I would, like any other child would do, get admiration and praises from her. All I ever needed was words of affirmation and validation that my actions, words and choices were really worth her approval and attention.

Whether it was through my toddler playfulness of emulating her behavior, the showcasing of acrobatic cartwheels or my scholastic achievement sharing. Was I emanating from a sense of insecurities, self-doubt or sheer kindergarten inquisitiveness, I ask?

Being the first born with two siblings behind my tail, I admit that I had more silent conversations with my mother in my young adulthood years than my sisters ever had in their feminine lives. As a growing young man, I began to disengage away from kindergarten attention seeking talks with my mom and started engaging on what I call “silent conversations”.

Silent conversation in my communication context is an ability to connect empathetically on an emotional level with your hearer without necessary saying a word. You do this by calmly reading their body language and engaging mainly through eye contact and seeking to interpret their thought-patterns, derived from their reactions to the question asked or comment made.

In my empathetic silence I too could only inaudibly interpret thoughts that went through her mind. It was the language only my mother and I could engage in; eyesight to eyesight, or better yet soul to soul.

In this silence state of our conversations, every blinking intensified with brief eye contact and like all other silent conversations we had before, much were left unsaid or sugar coated by quickly switching to the next subject. Every expression was read between the facial features lines; be it cold or warm.


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