Yeah-Yeah-Yeah, I know that, but-
Those are important words in any conversation. They indicate that all hope of actual communication is lost.
Have you ever been in the middle of explaining something, and someone says, "Yeahyeahyeah-" as a way to say they already know where you are going, so now they want to skip ahead to their turn?
It has a way of instantly shutting down the person who was interrupted. It says, "What you have to say isn't valuable to me, and you are wasting my time." And it's more than an interruption. It can actually diminish a person's sense of worthiness, and create shame for simply existing.
If you are someone who confabulates that way, you might think I'm being dramatic. But the effects on how we communicate with one another cannot be understated. Not everyone will be affected so deeply, but many are.
If you are enjoying time with friends and family, and people are excitedly recounting a fun memory, they might skip back and forth in the telling of the story, seemingly interrupting one another with "yeahyeahyeahandthen...", and it might be fine, and even fun for this kind of over-the-top interaction. But what I'm talking about isn't that kind of dynamic (and even there, if you aren't careful, you can steamroll someone without realizing it).
In most interraction, this communication quirk errodes trust and destroys relationships.
I once watched a realtionship disintegrate before my eyes that I thought would never end. One party felt misunderstood, but when they tried to explain themselves, the other party would cut them off with a 'yeahyeahyeahbutwhatyoudon'tunderstandis...' Person 1 was pigeonholed and never had the opportunity to correct misperceptions, or even to validate what the perceptions were, let alone show that they'd grown. Person 2 was so sure of themselves. so sure they were right and already knew it all, that Person 1 gave up trying to be heard, and the relationship ended.
These two people loved and adored one another as much as anyone I've ever seen, maybe even more than most. They would have each laid down their lives without hesitation to protect the other. I saw them both jump to defend the other's honor more times than I can count.
We all long to be heard.
To be acknowledged.
To be validated.
To be worth waiting for.
Next time you are tempted to hurry someone with "Yeah, yeah, yeah," or "I already know that," consider taking a deep breath, and hearing them out.
It might just save your realtionship.
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1900 Swift Street
North Kansas City, MO