HCOM 214: Interpersonal COMM & Conflict

Learning interpersonal communication skills to improve every part of our lives

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Closeness or not

When I was a younger child I felt a lot closer to my family, but as the years passed by It became more clearer that people who I truly felt closer to were my friends. For friends are the family you get to chose. The reason might be because my friends and I are in the same age range and have done many things together. Or it might be because my family was not around that much. I do not know the exact answer, all I know is that I feel closer with some of my friends than I do with my family. In fact my friends know more about me than my families does. In fact I basically refuse to tell anyone in my family anything personal. Personal information includes basically everything, such as what I do outside of the house, if I’m dating, or even if I’m sick or hurt. I tell no one in my family this information and even a select few friends know this information too. For me personal information is well personal. They don’t need to know my about my business, the same way I don’t need to know about theirs. Many things in the past has made me reserved like this. One of which is where I had some members in my family criticized me for no reason. The other reasoning being a bit personal to share. Still this does not affect how I feel about my family. My feelings for my intermediate family, grandparents, and extremely few aunts/uncles is that I care for them. But my extended family I don’t care at great lengths like I “should.” And the reason being for this is that they didn’t give much thought about us like they did with everyone else. Generally me and my sisters were a bit outcasted by them. So if they didn’t care about us, then why should we care about them. I say we because my sisters and I feel the same way about this topic.

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Baseball is an emotional sport, but the trick is to not let it be too emotional. I remember of an incident where I had a “couch-jumping” moment, where I completely lost control of my emotions. It was my Junior Year of High-School, but i was playing a game with my travel-ball baseball team. We were playing a tournament in Las Vegas, and i believe it was the championship game. It was my first time up to bat, and the first pitch i got was a low curve-ball, that the umpire called a strike. I had a different opinion than he did about the call, and when i asked him why he called it a strike, he said that it was right down the plate. I tried to argue with him, but i ended up getting a warning. I didn’t want to get kicked out of the game, so i kept my mouth shut after that. The next pitch was a high fastball, that again he called a strike, and i disagreed with, but because i had gotten a warning, i couldn’t really say anything. At that point i was pissed off, because i had gotten two bad calls, that put me in a terrible position as a hitter, i had lost two of my three chances to put the ball in play. But fortunately, the pitcher made a mistake, and left a hanging curve-ball down the plate, and i hit a bomb to left field. Unfortunately there was no fence at that park, or else i would have hit it over, because they estimated the ball traveled almost 400 ft. What got the umpire angry was the fact that i bat flipped, meaning i threw the bat up in the air while flipping it, which is a way to show that you crushed the baseball, and you know for a fact that you hit a home-run, i only got a double out of that hit, which was probably the reason the umpire got so mad, because to him i had no reason to bat flip, and he probably thought i directed that flip at him, meaning i flipped it to show off that even though he called two pitches a strike, i still hit a bomb. What ticked me off was when he called me out for it. He said that bat flipping was illegal and a disgrace to baseball. That’s when i got mad, i ran over to him, and tried arguing with him, and tried to find out the reason he called me out. He gave me a bullshit response, and i said ” wow, you’ve got to be kidding me.” That umpire needed to get his ears checked because after that he said “that’s it, you’re out of here”, and kicked me out of the game. I later found out that he thought i said ” Are you fucking kidding me”, and that was his reason for throwing me out of the game. But after that my coach ran out on the field, and started arguing with him, then the umpire threw him out of the game, because he was being a “clown”, that’s when i lost it, i ran back on the field, and started yelling and cussing, and that’s when my coach had to basically force me off the field because i went off on that umpire, as i was walking threw the dug-out, i was tossing helmets gloves, i completely lost it. ANd well, lets just say that a certain somebody isnt allowed to play in any All-Star organized baseball tournaments in Las Vegas Nevada again, because apparently the umpire filed a report saying that i was a danger on the field, and that i threatened his life. Moral of the story, some people are simply retarded.

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Dating Is Tough

Dating is something that’s always kind of tricky to traverse, no matter how much of a loser or Casanova one is. I’ve been dating this one girl who has had some trauma a few years ago which would prevent our relationship from being a “normal” as other peoples’. Because of this, she and I didn’t even kiss until our fourth date, something I am very much unaccustomed to since most other people my age are having sex by around the third date. She had explained things to me somewhat, but it didn’t make things any less difficult since I did like her and have feelings for her.

For our third, we went to see a movie and it was our first time holding hands as well. She had told me before that she didn’t want me to think that she didn’t like me because she very much did, but at times I found her as coming off as somewhat cold and would tell myself “Just let go of her hand Ani, you’re embarrassing yourself, she doesn’t give a shit about you.” She was verbally telling me that she liked me a lot, but her actions were telling me that she wasn’t interested in me. She’s the only person I’ve found luck dating recently, so it makes me more willing to be patient, but it doesn’t make things any less difficult since I’m used to more physical affection, not even necessarily sex, just more physical affection. On our most recent date, a similar thing was happening, we were looking into each other’s eyes and smiling at each other, speaking softly, delicately, breathily, all nonverbal signs of higher intimacy. As it seemed to become more clear we would kiss, she turned away and started crying out of nowhere, apparently she’d had a massive flood of anxiety kicking in and she felt terrible about it because she very much wanted to kiss me but her past trauma was preventing her from doing so. Eventually, at the end of our date, we were able to and that very much shelved a lot of worries for me, but those initial times, it’s really disconcerting when the words and actions of a potential romantic partner don’t line up.

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Maybe Should’ve Met In Person

Earlier this year, I was in a situation with a sort-of friend where he had been depressed (as had I) and we sort of leaned on each other for support. Already off to a bit of a bad start, two mentally unwell people trying to gain support from each other. When we’d meet in person, we wouldn’t typically talk too much about what had been going on, that was something we reserved for when we were texting. There’s a whole slew of problems with that, and they began to start culminating. One time about a month ago, he had been continually texting me about how he was upset about all these different things, I offered to not talk to him about certain things if that’d make him feel better, he just continued going on and on and we went back and forth until eventually out of nowhere he hits me with some strong sass and backhanded comments, completely out of nowhere. I decided to just leave him alone until he was ready to apologize for acting like a dick, he didn’t for a while, eventually three weeks later (of us barely talking) he messages me back with more backhanded comments about how I obviously don’t care about him enough to even talk to him. Since I was getting somewhat heated about it, I decided to continue having this discussion through the medium of technology as opposed to saying “Hey, look, maybe we should meet in person and talk about this?” The back and forth continued of kind of pointing fingers at each other, trying to find out who was in the wrong, until it turned out that he had misinterpreted my words of encouragement as words of condescension. This is not entirely my fault, as he could have just as easily asked for clarification instead of later blaming all of his actions on me and making it seem as if I must have responsibility for what he did, but if anything, it was a fair learning experience.

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Sometimes text isn’t the best way

I’ve always been a person who is upfront with others when there was some type of conflict between us. I don’t like it when people try to ignore or avoid the situation just because they don’t want to have it. Whenever you might have a problem with someone I believe its important to figure out what went wrong and talk about it because if you don’t whenever you see that person you will be upset with them. With that being said I’ve had a situation that was like this that I could have handled better.

My really close friend, that I have known for like 6 years now, and I had this really petty argument about something one day and usually if we do fight we never have to talk about it we just come to a mutual understanding about it but this time was different. I had heard from another friend that she had been really upset with me this time and I wanted to be the bigger person and apologize first so instead of calling her to talk about it I texted her. Now this is where I totally messed up I’ve learned you should never text people when your having some type of argument because text does not always express how you really feel about something. Moral of the story she got angrier because of the text and then we got into a bigger fight about things which was really sad because she is like one of my best friends. However, the next day was school and I went up to her because I just felt really bad and explained that I was really sorry and like we shouldn’t be fighting over something dumb and then we were fine. But because of this whenever I am having any type of conflict with anyone I know I always either talk to them in person or like call them because why make a small issue into a bigger one.

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Five Power Currencies

In interpersonal relationships there are five common power currencies: resource, expertise, social-network, personal, and intimacy. Resource currency is having physical materials such as money, property, and food. Expertise currency is a the power of knowledge. Social-network currency is a power through a network of connections. Personal currency is power through one’s looks and attributions such as height. Intimacy currency is the power when you share a strong bond with someone that no one else does. Allowing you to have power over them.

Out of the five power currencies I believe I have resource currency, expertise currency, and social-network currency. I am certain of this because I have a job that allows me to rack in income, which in turn gives me the luxury to rely more on myself for food and other commodities. I have expertise currency because from a very young age I was forced to learn many skill that others do not know. These skills include: cooking, sewing, mechanical work, repair work, computer skills, etc.Then there is social-network currency. I am able to meet and get along with people rapidly. Allowing me to have a network that I have power over. This includes being in good terms with my coworkers and bosses. I don’t believe I have personal currency because I believe I don’t have any attributes that can give me any sort of power. I don’t believe I have intimacy currency either because I have huge trust issues that prevent me from getting close and creating bonds with others. The currency I believe is the most important to have is that of resource currency. I believe this because when you have the power of resources, then you have the power to sustain your own and at times someone else’s life. Without resources, you won’t be able to live without relying on others. Intimacy currency I believe to be the least important of the five, because it’s hard to create and maintain a bond with someone that allows you to possess power over.

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Managing Conflict And Power

My results from the self-quiz ‘How do you approach Conflict’ are about what I expected. I agree that, in general, I approach conflict with a collaborative approach. I will often try to work with someone to find a solution that is beneficial for both of us, or exchange information to aid in effective problem solving together. That is typically my approach to conflict, but there are certain times or situations where I’ll use other approaches, such as competition or avoidance. If it is a subject that I know someone feels strongly about and talking about that will not help the conversation in any way, then I find it better to use the avoidance approach. And sometimes, occasionally, I will use a competition approach in less important situations or conversations.

I do agree that I’ve seen the Dyadic Power Theory in practice with certain people before, but the best example I can think of is my dad. My parents divorced when I was young, and ever since then they’ve shared a joint custody agreement where I’ve spent half a week at my mom’s and the other half at my dad’s. I also have two siblings, so between us we were moving back and forth, and living in, two separate households. This is complicated further by the fact my dad lives about 20 minutes away from my mom’s house, and his house is in the middle of a forest, far away from my friends, school, and an actual town. And then as my siblings and I have gotten older, my dad has fought even harder to keep us, and all our belongings he’s ever purchased for us at his house. But seeing as his house is out of the way of everything else that goes on in our lives something like that is incredibly difficult to manage. At the moment my brother is less than a month away from turning 18, and my dad is trying everything he can to convince my brother to continue going to his house. My sister, who just turned 16, has just gotten her own car and driver’s license, and my dad has to work even harder to get her to continue spending time at his house because she no longer has to rely on him for transportation.