When I speak, I speak quietly. I need time and space in order to be heard. Get distracted, get bored, forget – and you will miss it.
I will not emphasize important things in the way you do. The fact that I have said them at all should ring loud sirens in your head. If those sirens don’t go off, you will miss them.
I don’t convince and I don’t persuade. I will repeat myself if I really mean something. That’s it. I don’t want to persuade anyone of anything. If someone doesn’t have the will to understand, to evaluate their own understanding and to ask for more if things don’t seem clear – then I can’t and won’t force my view on them.
What I think is important to me. I never expect it to be important to anyone else. Long experience has shown me that most of what I think, for most people, in most situations, is entirely uninteresting or downright unpalatable.
This includes what I’m thinking and feeling about our relationship, when talking to you. If you change the subject, interrupt, kitchen sink, tit-for-tat or otherwise put expressing your thoughts ahead of listening to mine, to me that means you don’t want to hear me. Do that several times in a row, and it becomes very difficult to convince me that whatever interest you have in hearing me could be genuine, or more than fleeting.
If all of that puts you on eggshells, second-guessing what you say and how you react, then to me that means we have incompatible communication styles.
Sometimes a loved one, at the strangest and least obvious of moments, tells me something crucially important about how they are feeling. I find those moments profound and exciting, and I’m intensely grateful when I am there for them. It is chilling to think how easy it is to miss those quietly world-shattering words, which seem to only bubble up after many hours of the quiet and the mundane. It leaves me with an intense commitment to be there for more of them.
I don’t think you can do that. You want the end result. The process is excruciating for you. And your attempts to hurry up that end result are excruciating for me.