I sometimes feel like I am getting used to misunderstanding and being misunderstood. It feels like it happens in about 50% of my verbal interactions, both written and spoken. Most of the time, the results are mildly inconvenient or hardly noticed but when it is bad, it is really bad. What makes it worse is the TBI tendency to perseverate.
I start out feeling offended by what someone says. To the other person, I look angry, combative, sad or hostile. Sometimes, I lash out. Then, I begin to realize that my perceptions are not accurate. I struggle to set straight my initial reaction, while at the same time trying to understand the reality. I also want clarity. I want the other person to know what I thought. If that is not what was said, then I need it repeated or explained or justified. If I have not already shut down further attempts at discourse, I certainly will begin the process now.
A cacophony of thoughts battle for articulation.
What did you say? Why did you say... I thought you said...
Maybe, this time I am right.
Why are you angry at me? What did I do? What did I say?
I can fix this.
I need to show you how what you said made me feel defensive.
Why don't you want to hear it?
I thought you cared. Maybe, I didn't misunderstand.
Please explain it again.
But if you said ...
NO! Explain! I need to understand!
Why are you running away?
There are a couple more weeks of until Mercury stops wreaking havoc. Until then, I will take a vow of silence. Starting now! Not another word.
Oh, shit. Forget that. I mean starting now. Wish me luck.
Argh! Starting NOW!