I heard about a game that children played years ago called skid talking. Skid talking was a way of mixing words together that left you scratching your head and saying, "What???"
For example: "If my grandmother were alive today, she'd roll over in her grave."
As a game, skid talking might have been fun. However, many people grew up with a form of skid talking as the means of communication in their families. As a result, they used unclear statements and manipulative behavior in communication with others. Examples:
Blaming, Guilt or Shame Messages:
"If you ever came to dinner on time maybe we could all enjoy a hot meal for once!"
"What does a person have to do to get some help around here?"
Silence/withdrawal/pouting - By my actions, I tell you something is wrong; it's your job to pry out of me what it is.
Acting sick or needy - Complaining about stomachs, headaches, always on the brink of falling apart, etc. is the way I try to get my needs met.
Fantasy - Hoping/wishing you will give me what I need, without giving you any clues as to what that is; "if you loved me you'd know what I need!"
A big part of our recovery is learning to communicate in healthier ways. We send straight, clear messages by saying exactly what we mean and asking for what we need.
Tomorrow, we'll look at a formula for doing just that!