How to Have a Conversation with Someone Who Doesn’t Listen, But Really Needs to Win that Argument, Which Wasn’t Even Supposed to be an Argument, You Were Just Reading Something On Perez Hilton

No one’s ever written about that. I keep doing Google searches, and I come up empty handed. Techniques I’ve employed, with no success, include talking louder, trying to say what I mean in a different way, changing the subject, running from the room, crying, stomping my feet, but I’ve only managed to muddy the waters. I’ve concluded that it is impossible to have a conversation with someone who doesn’t listen. It is especially impossible when that person insists that he or she is right, you are wrong, when he hasn’t even heard or digested what you said.

It’s very easy to think then, “Oh, he just misunderstood what I said, I’ll say it again, but in a different way,” and that’s when the circular argument begins, because you’ve already tried that ten times.

 Your message is going to go directly from your brain, to your lips, through the air — like normal — but it is in this journey that the message transforms, so that upon entering your conversation partner’s ear, the meaning will have changed, so when its new meaning reaches his brain, he will  hear something different, something that he will shoot down immediately, and he’s going wonder out loud if you think the way you do because you grew up in trailer trash.

Yes, it’s the old, “Do you think you think that way because you grew up in trailer trash” argument, employed time and time again. It is very hard to argue against that.

“I wasn’t brought up in trailer trash,” you can counter.

“Oh ho ho ho! Defensive, are we?”

It is very hard to counter against the trailer trash card.

It all starts to seem pointless. But what to do, though, when the message gets transformed, and you see effort is futile, I don’t know, because even walking away doesn’t always work, because now you’re admitting defeat.

“Oh ho ho ho!” your conversation partner will say. “Now you’re walking away! I see that you are a coward!”

It can leave you feeling like you just can’t win.

“I feel like I just can’t win,” you might even find yourself saying, in moments of exasperation.

“Oh ho ho ho! I see it’s all about winning for you!”

So the thing to do is to give a really loud belch and finish it up with, “Oh, fuck it, I forgot what I was talking about.” How does that sound?

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About katiekelly

I grew up in a parking lot.
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4 Responses to How to Have a Conversation with Someone Who Doesn’t Listen, But Really Needs to Win that Argument, Which Wasn’t Even Supposed to be an Argument, You Were Just Reading Something On Perez Hilton

  1. indi says:

    Perfect!

  2. jeff says:

    Oh “F” it, I forgot ? I suppose that’s one way out, trouble is, that may become the only conversation you have with this other person. Main problem is that the other person is so incredibly self-centered, absorbed, even possibly self-victimized, that getting thru requires extreme patience and a lot of repeating. For instance, ” Okay here’s what I heard you say .. blah, blah, blah, right?” ” Do you mean, this xxx. or that yyy?” This works about 3/4 of the time, the other 1/4 of the time the response from the other person is something along the lines of ” This is really bizarre, you just don’t get it do you?” Not exactly a way to try to help you understand. Personally I think people like this really don’t want you to understand anything except that they are right. Or, you can just say “F” it and agree with everything. I just can’t seem to do that, all of the time. having a difference of opinion is healthy. It’s just not healthy when one person dominates to the point where you have to say “F” it, I forgot what I was saying.

  3. Jeff says:

    Well, Katiekelly, it does feel like that sometimes.

    Jeff

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