I need to talk.

No no no, don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to tell you all my problems…well, not here, anyway, but I need to talk. Hopefully I AM the only person in the known universe who finds this difficult.

This is dumb.

People talk just fine most of the time. I talk a lot…some people might say A LOT…but it’s about the weather and why I like red chairs and white chocolate and what on earth my kids are thinking. I don’t talk about…stuff. I think it’s just me. But it’s bad.

When I was a kid I spent heaps of time waiting for my parents. I was an only child. I’d have a book to read or some paper to draw on, but basically there’d be a lot of waiting, and listening, and what I heard was always the same thing: my parents telling people their problems.

Always. Again.

I knew their problems already. I lived in our house. I had ears and eyes, and I figured that the three of us was about as far as that stuff needed to go. I didn’t roll my eyes at them because I was a good girl, but I decided, at the age of eleven, that I wasn’t going to tell anyone anything. Ever.

Except the stuff about the red chairs and the white chocolate, that was okay.

And that’s how things have stayed. Please tell me that I AM the only person who tells her husband and her best friends that she’s had a bad day…three days after the fact. It’s dumb. It really is. People need to talk about stuff. We do.

I do.

There’s just something about opening your mouth and pulling your heart out of it and giving it to another person that just smacks of the unsafe and faintly ridiculous. You have to trust people. You have to know them enough to believe that they do care, they do value what you’re telling then and that they won’t take that little piece of heart you’ve given them and stomp on it. You’ve got to trust that they are strong enough to be able to take that little piece of your heart and nestle it in next to theirs for a while until that little piece of your heart feels strong again. It’s not easy. The staircase that your heart has to climb up out of your chest, spiraling around your throat and up and out of your mouth is a long one. Sometimes my words get tired, and often they stop just before they reach the opening, and I will look at the person I’m with and nod my head sagely as if they know already, and while my tired heart pants in the back of my mouth my tongue pulls out the safe answer to the big question of “what’s happening?” and shoves it out for my listening friend, “Oh, you know. Stuff.” So today I’ve made a decision, and it’s this. It’s a big one:

I need to talk.

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30 thoughts on “I need to talk.

  1. Hi! I found a blog post of yours recommended by wordpress so I’ve been taking a look around 🙂 Really like your posts, good mixture of thoughtful comment and humour. I LOVE the staircase analogy in this one, yesterday I had this very experience. By God’s grace I managed to spit out what I really didn’t want to say. Being vulnerable around people is hard because we’re talking to people just as broken as we are. How can we possibly tell how they will respond? I’ll be looking forward to seeing where your new journey takes you. – Sarah

    • Sarah that’s great, thanks so much for having a look round, so glad you like what you’re finding.
      I think blogging is helping me talk…funny that. I’m a bit rusty, but I think it’ll go okay 🙂
      Well done for saying what you needed to yesterday. I know how hard that is!

  2. you are not the only one – I have learned to trust a few people but like you I hate complaining–but you are right –we all need to talk and to be heard and cherished -hope you find people who will hear and love – it sounds like you have some in your life because you have come to this big decision–now just talk

  3. I’ve been following your blog and find I have been agreeing with your inputs until today. In this post, if I understand you correctly, you’re basically saying you have to trust someone before you will open up to them and talk (really talk) to them. I am just the opposite type of person. I automatically trust EVERYONE until they give me reason not to…therefore I find myself talking to everyone. Don’t get me wrong, I do have a social filter, but for the most part I am what you would call an open book and it has worked very well for me in my life. I would challenge you to try it sometime and make it a life adventure for you. What have you got to lose but a few words?

    • Yeah I agree with you 100%. I’m just bad at it. I’ll get there…some habits take a while to change.
      Funny thing is the blog is helping me in this: sharing generalities with strangers is helping me to share specifics with friends. Thanks for reading! 🙂

  4. I have a little girl who does that – bottles everything up inside. You wouldn’t know anything was wrong until one day she starts screaming – over something very tiny. So, I am trying to coax the words out of her. Sit down, have a cuppa with her and just let her take the time it takes to actually express the thing that is going on inside, which obviously isn’t easy, but once she gets it off her chest, she feels much better. Now, I think she begins to see the value in talking. All the best with your journey with this. 🙂

    • Amanda I have a little girl like that too! It’s really helped me to know that it’s a personality thing as much as learned experience. Good luck with yours – sounds like you’ve got some good strategies already, and thanks!

  5. Good post, Megan. I had a somewhat opposite problem, I didn’t know how to small talk – like at a party. So one summer I made a goal of learning small talk by making myself talk to people in the checkout at the grocery. I would just say something to whoever was there while I was waiting. Now I can make anyone and everyone I come in contact with laugh. Pat

    • I love it! Well done Pat. Small talk is really quite a difficult skill, and I’m constantly surprised by the number of people I meet who say they can’t do it. Well done for recognising it.

  6. well i always want to talk.. i just never seem to get anyone who wants listen, despite the fact that i listen real good to other people…sigh ;-(

    • I feel for you. So many people do just want to talk about themselves and not listen to other people, and it’s hard. I know from experience that sometimes I’ve had to force people to listen to me, which is neither natural or easy, but sometimes you gotta do what you can to make yourself heard. Good luck.

  7. I get you hey.. I don’t know why for some of “us” find it much easier to rather type our thoughts than to talk to someone about it… I guess we have fear and something might have instilled it in us. . Keep typing, i’ll keep reading:)

  8. Wonderfully expressed…and such a coincidence for me as I’m struggling with “trust” lately and who I can talk to about what’s going on for me now…and I’m working on a new post called..guess what…Trust…and you have given me more fuel for thought…thank you!!!!

  9. Something I’ve come to realize is that everyone has a stuff…bagage if you will. The trick isn’t always about finding ways to become strong enough to carry it on your own, but finding other people that are strong enough to help you carry it all from check point to check point, and smart enough to help you down size every once in a while. 🙂

  10. Oh I know exactly how you feel…the risk! Just last night my husband was criticizing my blog over dinner, and since then I’ve had this sinking feeling…I’ve been posting to (potentially) the entire planet. Great.

    • It’s a funny one, isn’t it, the my-little-blog-just-with-me-and-who-the-hell-reads-these-things-anyway…turns out to be…a lot of people 🙂
      For what it’s worth Erica I really liked your blog! Don’t know what your husband was criticising, but I felt like I got to go on holiday with you for a little while, which is always fun. Hope you’re still enjoying Italy.

  11. Megan, saw you on Rachelle Gardner’s blog and love this post! I agree, we need to talk, but I’ve learned that there are the right people and the wrong people to talk to. My husband and I are from central Minnesota and we took my mother-in-law to New York City a few years ago. I’m afraid there are still people in that city who are confounded by the strange woman who struck up a conversation with them on the subway – she hasn’t mastered the art of who you should and who you shouldn’t talk to!

    • Haha, thanks for finding me Gabrielle! I wondered for a minute why your name was so familiar, and then I realised I’d done the same thing, and that YOUR blog was on a tab at the top of my computer screen. Wow. I love the blogosphere, how fun!
      And rather ironic that while it’s perfectly acceptable to meet strangers and chat this way it ISN’T acceptable to meet them on a subway, or a cafe. Is that NY experience one of small-town meets big city and people have different expectations, or was your mother-in-law trying to tell them really inappropriate things?
      I’m heading over to the States myself for the very first time in a couple of months…I’m so excited, but I’ll probably be the one to confound people on subways and cafes : )

      • Ha! It was definitely “small town meets big city” adventure. We kept telling her to stop talking to strangers, but she loves striking up conversations no matter where she goes!

        Where will you be heading in the States? I didn’t even look to see where you’re writing from. I love the US – it’s so diverse – no matter where you go the people, dialect and culture are so different. Hope you have some fun plans!

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