By: Dr. Synesio Lyra, Jr.
I often hear people complain that persons they know don’t seem to talk to them anymore. In some cases, even those whom they considered to be close friends appear distant, and don’t visit or talk as much as it was done before. While they used to respond so readily to invitations for social interactions, they now appear to find reasons always to decline similar offers.
Not that any fight took place between those people, nor misunderstandings erupted among them. They just question “Why” and lament, without knowing the cause.
Through my investigation of some such reports, I quickly notice that what often happens is that the complainer tends to be a very domineering individual. In spite of the hospitality which such person extends to others, when it takes place it appears that they,alone, open their mouth the entire time of the visit.
In the case of a couple, it is also quite frequent that when a spouse says something relatively insignificant, the other immediately has to contradict, or deny what is being said. For instance, if a person refers to something being yellow, the other will interrupt simply to say, “No, it was green;” if one is describing a vacation taken together and alludes to some incident they experienced, the other has to revise and “correct” a minor, irrelevant detail which no one cares about, and which makes no difference to the report being presented.
After experiencing some of the above, or other unpleasant distractions of this nature, some people begin to retreat whenever a new invitation is issued to them for dinner by the same individuals, or any other type of socializing with those people.
Sadly, I’ve seen such things far too often, which make me understand the vacillation of some in being ready to respond and be with acquaintances which will just repeat the same “show” which quickly ceases from being interesting or desirable.
If you wish to be hospitable to others, and to enjoy the company of such friends and acquaintances, seek to inquire more about them rather than talk about yourself. Allow them the opportunity to participate in a conversation if you ever want to see them back; give them the opportunity to speak, make the experience a true exchange, involving dialogues rather than the monologues you use to dominate the moments spent together.
As you can see, you don’t need to start a fight in order to distance your friends from you; any of the above is a form of disrespect, even if unintentional, which most people prefer to avoid altogether. It’s always good to enjoy the company of others. But for that, there is the right way and the wrong manner of doing it! Know the correct manner and do it!