HCOM 214: Interpersonal COMM & Conflict

Learning interpersonal communication skills to improve every part of our lives

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Friends Prompt 2

I used to believe that friends were forever and my mom used to tell me that I could not trust entirely in someone even if I call them “best friends.” My group of friends has always be really small. I grew up with three friends and I considered one of them my “best friend,” we went to kindergarten and elementary school together. We did everything together, and I truly believed that we were best friends but we start coming apart, and I started noticing that not everyone appreciates a friendship in the same way. I have experienced that in a lot of friendships jealousy gets in the way. Then, I moved to live to a different place and made new friends and once again I called someone my “best friend” but the same thing happened, and since that time I have not considered someone a “best friend.” I do have close friends, and I still keep in touch with friends that I am not as close anymore. So, I do agree that friendships are less stable and more likely to change. In the past five years my group of friends has been continuously changing. I think that friends are more accessible to break, and it is really hard to tell when someone is your true friend but I feel like friends cannot replace family because your family will always be there no matter what. Also, I think friendships are more likely to change than romantic relationships, or it might depend on the kind of romantic relationship because if you break up with your boyfriend/ girlfriend, your friends will still be there. But when the romantic relationship is more meaningful, and you create a more profound bond then I feel like is less possible to break off because now you are sharing your life with someone else and you are relying on each other.


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Family Members #2

I feel closer to my family members than to my friends. Although I do not always share the same information with friends and my family members, I think that my family really knows who I am and my friends do not know my whole life so I would never say that my best friend is closer to me than my own mother. From my entire family, I think I am the closest to my mother. Every day after she gets from work or during the day she calls me and we have a conversation and share what happened on each other’s day. With her, I can talk about anything, and I know that she will listen. I have an older sister and before I used to feel really close to her but she recently got married, and now I have noticed that we are not as close as I thought maybe because she is five years older than me, so we never talk about or personal information. I feel like she sees me as her baby sister and not as a friend with whom she can share her personal things. Also, I have a younger brother; I am three years older than him, and lately I have been closer to him than to my sister since we are closer to age I think we have more things in common. With him, I can have more meaningful conversations like about our future and goals. But, there are still some topics that we don’t feel comfortable sharing with each other for example about our love life. Lastly with my dad is the one that I have less communication. With him is not like we have a conversation every day and for this reason, I never share personal information. I don’t even share with him anything about school so when we talk is more about things that are happening around the house.

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Romantic Partners #8

Nowadays technology plays a huge role in initiating relationships. My parents often talk about how when they met technology did not have any part of starting a relationship. They grew up with the tradition that the guy had to visit the girl to her house or send her letters. Then I can say that the letters were a way to keep in touch when they could not be together and now, instead of letters, we use text messages or calls. A big difference is that now technology is not just to keep in touch, but now social networks play an important role in meeting new people and even starting a relationship with a person you’ve never spoken in person before. In my own opinion, I do not like to use technology as a source of start meeting someone and then if “you are attracted” to the person based on the communication through messages you decide to go out or not.  I think that to start a romantic relationship, you must talk face to face with the person to really get to know someone. Then, you can use messages, calls, and facetime to continue being in contact with the person and to maintain the relationship since not always will be possible to be with the other person and this also helps for long distance relationships where they rely on technology to continue being in a relationship.

As for terminating a relationship using communication through technology I am not going to say that I have not considered because in a way I think I have done it. But I guess it all depends on the type of relationship. I believe there are sometimes that is easier to terminate the relationship through technology. When the couple it’s not on good terms, and they can’t see each other anymore for whatever reason. On the contrary, I think it is better to end the relationship face to face, so it is easier to reach an agreement and to clarify anything that may be concerning the other person. So when you see each other, it will not feel as awkward as if you never got to talk in person and sometimes, when doing it face to face, you can also end up on such a good terms as to remain friends.


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Nonverbal​ Communication Prompt 4

One of the nonverbal gender differences research findings that I most identify with is; “Women are better than men at both sending and receiving nonverbal messages.” I think this finding is correct because I have noticed how a woman can communicate with another woman just with signals when it is necessary. This research finding helped me understand my nonverbal behavior because based on my own experiences interacting with men and women it matches with the result.  I can say that I usually use nonverbal communication with close friends, but this mostly only happens with another woman. I do not think I have experience receiving and sending a nonverbal communication with men. Probably one of the reasons why this happens is because women among them can have more trust and create a closer relationship and on the contrary, I believe that men do not make the same close relationships with other male friends. For example, with my mom or one of my closest friends we can be around more people and only with eye contact we can send each other nonverbal messages or like with my mother when I am close to her, and she wants to tell me something she squeezes my hand. This probably sounds weird and I do not know if someone else has experienced this but with my mom squeezing my hand I can tell what she is trying to say to me, and it’s the same thing if I want to tell her something.

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Verbal Communication Prompt 1

I think in the past I used to imagine that my name was something different,  but I think it was just little me playing to have a different name. I do not think in reality I have ever considered or would consider changing my name. My full name is Karina Salcedo Gomez, and I could not imagine having a different name because I think my name represents who I am and where I come from, it connects me with my family and relatives. The characteristic of language that it most important to support my position I think it is that language is symbolic because my last name is an important symbol that represents me. I feel that here in the United States last names are not very important. For example, everyone only uses one last name, but I grew up in Mexico and where I used to live last names have a lot of meaning or maybe is because I lived in a smaller place, so people know you because of your name. For example, if I was meeting someone and I said “my name is Karina Salcedo Gomez” they would instantly know who my parents are or they would ask “are you Jesus’ daughter?”. It was different coming to live here and only using Salcedo and not Gomez.  If I got married, I do not think I would be willing to change my last name to my spouse’s. Probably I would consider hyphenating my name with my spouse’s, but I would not just completely change my last name because I would feel like I am a different person. I prefer keeping my last name to carry on my family’s history and because I would want my children also to have my last name. Although they would not use it would still be part of them connecting them with my background.

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Active Listening Prompt #4

Before taking the Self-Quiz “Multitasking and Attention,” I didn’t think that I multitask online as much as the score I got reflected because when I am trying to concentrate it is difficult for me to do other things at the same time. For example, I almost never do my homework listening to music because I get distracted. After taking the quiz, I was surprised because I agreed with the seven statements in which the score says that I spent much of my time multitasking, and likely I find it challenging to focus my attention on just one thing. This made me think more deeply if I multitasked and it was funny that as I was doing the quiz on the book, I was also using my computer, and then I received a notification, and without thinking, I grabbed my phone. The quiz made me take a look at my daily activities, and I realized that I am always multitasking online. If I am not doing more that one thing at the time I get bored. I think I was not like this before, probably in the last year that has changed. Although I am always trying to do two things at the moment, I believe that if I focused my attention completely on only one task at the time, I would be able to finish everything faster. For example, when I am on my computer doing homework, I usually have more than one tab open with different assignments that I need to do, or with random things that distract me from completing everything faster and I am almost always checking my phone as I am doing something else.  Also, in some of my classes, while the professor is speaking, I am on my computer, or I check my phone and although I can still hear what s/he is saying I believe I am not entirely listening. Besides, if I am watching Netflix, I am also using my phone or trying to do homework if it is something that it does not need my full concentration. So, I think my attention is never fully in only one thing. Something that I could do to minimize my multitasking online would be to put my phone away and when I am on my computer to just do one thing at the time.

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Emotions Prompt #12

One time that I used encounter avoidance was with a guy, we were friends, but then he told me that he had feelings for me and since I did not felt the same way I was honest with him. I hoped that we would remain friends, but he said that he did not want to talk to me if it was only as a friend, so we stopped talking. We were in the same high school so I started to avoid the places where I knew that he would be because it was uncomfortable seeing him and pretending that nothing had happened.

I usually used encounter structuring with my mother because I cannot talk to her about religion, everytime that religion comes up as one of our topics we ended up in a discussion. I used to speak with her about religion, and although I never said that I doubted about our religion, she felt like I did not believe in God anymore so now I try not to talk to her about religion.

For attention focus, the only situation I can think about it is similar to the example of the book. During my classes most of the times I focus entirely on the professor because if I am not actively watching the professor, I would easily get distracted by what others are doing.  

A time that I can think about when I had to deactivate my emotions completely was when one of my cousins died. I was like nine years old, and my cousin that died was the closest cousin of my age, we had grown up together, and although our parents had some issues, we never let that affect us. But the day that she died, and another family member told me that my cousin had been run over and that she had passed away I could not believe. I wanted to pretend as nothing had happened. I didn’t want to think about it, so I went to school like if everything was normal. When I was at school, my teachers try to send me back to my house because they did not believe that I was okay, but they did not understand that I wanted to stay at school because I did not want to feel and be reminded of what had happened.

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Perceiving Others Prompt 8

I completed the Self- Quiz “Test Your Empathy” on page 100. For both categories, I got a score of 3, which is in the 2-3 score that indicates that I have a “moderate empathy.”  I think this score points out that I can show empathy, but it depends on the situations. Sometimes it just hard for me to show understanding towards others, not because I can’t understand or share the feeling of others but because it is difficult for me to show my emotions and how I am feeling in a particular situation. I think this happens to me more with close friends for some reason I think it is easier to empathize with strangers. Some circumstances in which it is easy for me to empathize is when I see a person taking advantage of someone else. I think this is the most usual situation because in everyday basis I see people or hear people taking advantage of others and that it’s unfair. For example, when a student is taking advantage of another student or when an employee takes advantage of the other employees.  Also, I would say that it is easy for me to empathize when I see other people that are less fortunate or that have fewer resources available than me. On the contrary, sometimes it is just hard to always show empathy, for example, it is hard to feel others emotions when I have never experienced those same feelings. I think I show my empathy depending on what I think is right or wrong. As I was thinking of empathy, I thought about homeless people or the people that ask for money in the streets. I think this is a good example of both easy and challenging situations because I usually feel empathy for those people but sometimes it is also hard to feel empathy because I don’t know when this person is really having struggles in their life.

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Self Concept #5

If a future employer were to use social media to investigate me, I think they would get a clear vision of who I am. How I present myself online reflects my values. I am usually cautious of what I post on social media. I think twice before posting anything. For the reason that I know that anything that you post could damage your reputation or future since apparently, anything published online is there forever, even after is deleted. I only post what I think is valuable or unique. I do not post useless or offensive things. In my facebook I do not post regularly I mostly have it to stay connected with all my relatives and friends that I do not see often. Sometimes I share things, but if you would look at my facebook page, you would pretty much see things that I appreciate or like and mostly things that motivate me or that show the goals and accomplishments that I have in life. In my Instagram bio, I almost always have a motivational or inspirational quote that reflects what I want in life or for what I am working in life, and the pictures that I post are mostly with my friends, family or of unique/significant moments. In Snapchat I post more of my regular life, but still, I do not post anything that would discredit my person. I never comment or share bad things of other people because that is just not who I am. Those are the only three social media that I have, I know a lot of my friends also use Twitter, and I once open an account. But I never used it because I feel like in Twitter most people share too much of their life if you would see their tweets you would quite know their whole life.  So if someone would ever use my social media to investigate me, I do not think that they would find something that would make them have a second opinion on me. On the contrary, I think they would just verify the kind of person that I am.