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Author Topic: How Do We Ask?  (Read 2687 times)

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Offline HopeandCope

  • Member
  • Posts: 55
    • Hope and Cope
How Do We Ask?
« on: September 08, 2008, 02:58:57 PM »
“I just heard from the boy today!” I said to my husband.  “I got 12 yes(s), 15 no(s) and 1 non-committal grunt – all in all a good conversation.”

How many of us parents would like to get into our child’s head and find out everything that we want to know about how they are feeling, how they are coping and anything else that might pop into our parental vortex of multiple choice questions.  When we ask “How are you?” somehow the response fine is just not good enough.  Especially when you read blogs about the POZ person’s sometimes negative view of himself or how he or she thinks the world views them, a non-committal “fine” answer to our myriad of unsaid questions just does not cut it.

But how do we as parents tread lightly but get enough information about our child without alienating that fragile connection we have?  I don't want to hover over my child but I would like to be able to help my son without overwhelming him.

I am writing a new blog at http://hopeandcope.blogspot.com exploring this “fragile” connection supportive parents have with their POZ child and I would like to know how you would like Mom/Dad or support person to approach you with questions they may have about how you are and how you are coping. Jude



Jude
Hope and Cope Support Site
A Safe Place for Families & Friends of HIV+ People
http://hopeandcope.blogspot.com/

Offline pozniceguy

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  • Posts: 1,177
  • Niceguy Dallas
Re: How Do We Ask?
« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2008, 04:49:04 PM »
Why not just ask specific questions...can I see your latest labs??? do you have any specific side effects from the meds??? tell me about your visit with the support group...!!!  have you lost/ gained any weight???

so on dont just accept yes / no/ fine......once he/she knows you are interested and not just nosy or intrusive he/ she may "talk to you"

Nick......
remember the good times...honor the past but don't live there
Le stelle la notte sono grandie luminose, nel cuore profondo del Texas

Offline HopeandCope

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  • Posts: 55
    • Hope and Cope
Re: How Do We Ask?
« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2008, 07:13:38 PM »
When I visited the support group it was a toss up between, "I don't like to talk about it because it worries my mom" or "I don't think she is interested".  It was boiling down to the comfort level of both parties and how it afected the conversations about the health of the child.  Lot of comfort level issues running rampant.

Now with my son, I come right and use the direct approach like you said but it wasn't until I read his partner's blog about his self image that I realized I may have been asking the wrong questions.
Jude
Hope and Cope Support Site
A Safe Place for Families & Friends of HIV+ People
http://hopeandcope.blogspot.com/

Offline Ann

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  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: How Do We Ask?
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2008, 09:37:32 AM »
One of the ways to get a person to open up is to phrase your questions in such a way as to make a "yes" or "no" answer impossible. Start your questions with words like "how", "what", and "when" instead of "is it" and "do you". Be creative with your phrasing and try to not sound like you're interrogating.

Good luck!

Ann
Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline HopeandCope

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  • Posts: 55
    • Hope and Cope
Re: How Do We Ask?
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2008, 10:12:46 AM »
Excellent Tip Ann!  Thanks!
Jude
Hope and Cope Support Site
A Safe Place for Families & Friends of HIV+ People
http://hopeandcope.blogspot.com/

Offline megasept

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  • Posts: 478
  • Steven here...
Re: How Do We Ask?/ How Do We Listen?
« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2008, 06:58:53 PM »
Why not just ask specific questions...can I see your latest labs??? do you have any specific side effects from the meds??? tell me about your visit with the support group...!!!  have you lost/ gained any weight???

so on dont just accept yes / no/ fine......once he/she knows you are interested and not just nosy or intrusive he/ she may "talk to you"

Nick......

(Ann just posted her tip, while I was correcting my mistakes on this post; her suggestion is great!)

Nick is so right. If you listen to your child, including retaining some portion of their actual answers to questions you pose to them, you will 1) learn something 2) show you care and reject HIV stigma, etc, and 3) have something specific to study before the next discussion.

It's the art of conversation. It's actions before words, because "What should we talk about?" is not a problem when two people experience something together. Even with a few missteps, in the long run your child would be a lot happier if he/she thought you were interfering, as opposed to indifferent, especially if they know what's in your heart. Trust is everything.
 
8)  -megasept (who's way way post-adolescent)



« Last Edit: September 12, 2008, 07:03:22 PM by megasept »

Offline HopeandCope

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  • Posts: 55
    • Hope and Cope
Re: How Do We Ask?
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2008, 01:03:45 PM »
There are a lot parents that just do not know what to say.  Emotions run the gamut from being angry to be mind numbingly worried.  I know a lot Moms and Dads will benefit from what all of you have to say so I thank you for your input!

I have a case of fatiques this weekend and need to rest but I am going to put that blog post together soon.

Jude
Jude
Hope and Cope Support Site
A Safe Place for Families & Friends of HIV+ People
http://hopeandcope.blogspot.com/

 


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