Listening for Feelings
Children communicate to parents much more than words or ideas. Behind the words often lie feelings. Below are some typical "messages" children send. Read each separately, trying to listen for feelings. Then select the feeling or feelings you heard. Discard the "content" and choose only the feeling-usually one or several words. Some of the statements may contain several different feelings. Choose all of the main feelings you hear. The most accurate answer is shown below each statement.
Example: I don't know what is wrong. I can't figure it out. Maybe I should just quit trying.
- is stumped
- is discouraged
- is tempted to give up
- Oh boy, only ten more days until schools out.
- Look Daddy, I made an airplane with my new tools.
- Will you hold my hand when we go into the nursery school?
- I am not having any fun I cannot think of anything to do.
- I'll never be good like Jim. I practice and practice and she is still better than me.
- My new teacher gives us too much homework. I can never get it all done.
- All the other kids went to the beach. I don't have anyone to play with
- Jim's parents let him ride his bike to school but I'm a better rider than Jim.
- I shouldn't have been so mean to little Nicholas. I guess I was bad.
- I want to wear my hair this way – it's my hair isn't it?
- Do you think I'm doing this report right? Will it be good enough?
- Why did she make me stay after school anyway? I wasn't the only one who was talking. I'd like to punch her in the nose.
- I can do it myself. You don't need to help me. I'm old enough to do it myself.
- Math is too hard. I'm too dumb to understand it.
- Go away. Leave me alone. I don't want to talk to you or anybody else. You don't care what happens to me anyway.
- For a while I was doing good, but now I'm worse than before. I try hard, but it doesn't seem to help. What's the use?
- I would sure like to go but I just can't call her up. What if she would laugh at me for asking her?
- I never want to play with Pam anymore. She is mean.
- I'm sure glad I happened to be born the baby of you and daddy rather than some other parents.
- I think I know what to do but maybe it's not right. I always seem to do the wrong thing. What do you think I should do dad, work or go to college?