It can be difficult to get your parents to listen to you, especially if you feel like they don’t respect you. However, there are a few things you can do to increase the chances that they’ll take you seriously.
These include making sure you’re respectful when you’re speaking to them. If you’re rude or hostile, they’re less likely to want to listen to you. Also, try to be clear about what you’re asking for. If you’re vague or unclear, they may not understand what you’re trying to say.
But if you feel like doing such minimal things will not help, because the problem is deeply rooted; then why not try the tips and steps listed below?
5 ways to get your parents to listen to you:
1. Learn to read their mood:
Yes, you deserve to be heard, especially by your parents. However, besides being your parents, they are humans too, and as much as they want to be there for you, there are times when they aren’t mentally available to deal with your issues or worries. If you think about it, you may have experienced this too. Maybe you were too stressed about an exam that you didn’t feel like you had time to accept more challenges.
Having said all that, it’s still possible to trust that your parents are there to listen to you. The only thing you need to do is select the right moment to approach them. You can do this by choosing the time of the day when they are more open to actively listening to you and giving you good advice, and avoid the times when you see that their mood has deteriorated due to stress or a specific problem they are having.
2. Be straightforward about your needs:
One of the reasons why communication can be hard is that we automatically think that we are going to be well-understood the first time explaining our problems. The reason for this is that we fully understand what we are trying to communicate because we are literally going through it firsthand. However, others may find it challenging to get the full picture or understand why such a matter is so relevant to you.
So you may need to put in more effort and express clearly the extent to which this affects you before you tell your parents what you need them to do to help. For this reason, when we try to explain what’s going on in our mind to someone else, we need to make sure we’re patient, very precise, and willing to explain things more than once and take different approaches.
After this, you will finally be able to catch your parents’ attention. But, even then they may not understand fully what you are trying to say or how important it is for you to have them listen, so don’t feel frustrated if they start asking questions. In fact, if your parents start asking questions take it as a sign that they are making an effort to understand you and be there for you. However, it’s important to not hesitate to answer their questions and give them all the details and answers they need without holding back.
Don’t fear your parents’ reactions when they hear what you have to say, otherwise, that will prevent you from being completely honest.
3. Reassure your parents that you don’t want conflict:
This may be harder if what you have to say to your parents is about them and something you would like them to change. But even though you want to talk to them about a complicated and sensitive issue it’s very easy for people to jump to conclusions and not understand your intentions at first and then cause unnecessary disagreements.
If things come to that, it will be much harder to reach an understanding and a solution so it would be better if you assured your parents right from the beginning that you don’t want to create any conflict or tension. Give them a heads-up that the topic may not be very pleasant if you think it will help, and ask them not to quickly get offended or upset. Tell them that you are going to speak very calmly and are just trying to get your point across.
Not only will this help the progression of the conversation and reach a good outcome, but it will also subconsciously make your parents mirror your behavior and choose peace and clear communication. They too, will try to speak calmly and be transparent and understanding throughout the whole conversation.
4. Listening to them is important too:
Being able to listen to your parents might sound counterproductive when it’s you who doesn’t feel heard, but the truth is, it’s easier to get what we want from someone when we get them to mirror our behavior. If you aggressively tell your parents that they never listen and that you deal with your problems alone; it won’t seem like things are going to change, and they will feel less inclined to listen to you.
Instead, remain calm and you can try to be affectionate towards your parents when you are going to talk with them. This attitude will make them feel that you are mature and respectful. In the end, you will realize that listening to your parents’ side can be very useful in forcing them to do the same and calmly listen to your side and perspective too.
5. Don’t expect everything to change overnight:
You need to remember that creating a new habit is just as hard as breaking an old one. This means that it’s unrealistic to expect your parents to start listening to you at all times just because you had one honest talk with them. Things take time to change and you and your parents will have to be patient and show consistency in your efforts to change things around.
Having that first talk is a great step, but you need to still tell your parents that they are falling into their old ways whenever they slip up. Much like the talk you had with them about active listening, you will have to be calm and affectionate when you remind them that they are not listening to you again.
Of course, changing strict and demanding parents to softer and kinder ones takes a lot of work and doesn’t happen overnight. So whatever you do make sure you keep trying and that you show a lot of patience.