My Dad’s funeral was accompanied with quite some family tension, unfortunately. For a few reasons, I was best-placed to resolve them and I’ve done the best I can, while making sure I looked after myself as best I can, too.
Anger was the prevalent response to the source of tension and this frustration was expressed very directly, without any right of reply. Encouraged by reading the first few chapters of Nonviolent Communication by Marshall B Rosenberg, I tried a different approach. I asked questions and listened. I encouraged the individual to consider a better way forward for themselves.
The tension isn’t fully resolved and the individual has much work to do. Listening offered the opportunity for her to look inward and make improvements, where reeling off frustration had caused her to shut things out. I’d have preferred to express my own feelings more directly, but I’m pleased I took the more difficult route and, as a result, made much better progress for all of us.