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Second Sense - Beyond Vision Loss

Have Intentional Discussions with Your Loved Ones

April 16, 2014 | 1 Comment

by Marcia Knudson, Manager of Counseling Services at Second Sense

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If you’re anything like me, your thoughts and energies are directed toward lists and responsibilities. When your activity level goes up, so can your stress level.

The close relationships we have go more smoothly when expectations and intentions are clear.  But they often aren’t clear, and misunderstanding, frustration and impatience ensues. Bringing some intention to discussions can really help, even though it takes a bit more work. Here’s a framework for discussions that has worked well for many of the people I’ve worked with. I call it an intentional discussion, and here’s how it goes:

  • Schedule a time to talk. It’s best not to hold these conversations in the heat of the moment.
  • Acknowledge the other person’s positive intentions, like, “I know you didn’t mean to hurt my feelings,” or “I know you were doing your best,” or “I know you care about me.”
  • Ask for and listen to their fears and feelings.
  • Share your fears and feelings.
  • Be specific.
  • Avoid words like “always” and “never.”
  • Make a plan for resolving the issue.
  • After the discussion, check in periodically.
  • Notice changes and express thanks.
  • NO “WHATEVER,” EVER. Your relationship is too important!

Enjoy your relationships with your loved ones! The sun is actually shining in my window. I hope it is in yours as well!

Our Friends and Family Exchange is a list serve where you can share frustrations and triumphs with others who have loved ones learning to live with vision loss.  To join, please contact Marcia Knudson at 312-236-8569.

Marcia Knudson, LCSW, is the newest member of our Second Sense team bringing many years of counseling experience .  Marcia is a graduate of North Park University and Loyola University School of Social Work.

1 comment on “Have Intentional Discussions with Your Loved Ones”

  1. Diane says:

    Way to go, Marcia! We all need to be reminded about how to manage important relationships. Thanks, Diane at BACOA

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