This week's interviews are the first I've published that are exclusively father and son. They are very succinct, honest and straight to the point. As ever I'm deeply grateful to them both for taking the time to participate.
FIRST WE HEAR FROM S...
• What has been the most valuable lesson you have learned so far with regards to communicating with your children?
The importance of listening and just being there for someone. More important than what you have to say to them.
• When has it all gone horribly wrong for you, and what did you do to fix it?
The tough thing is keeping a hold on the aspects of your own personality that you feel are important in making you an inspiring character for your children to respect and love. Balancing this with wanting to be there for them 100%. Not losing these qualities as you become in many ways subservient to your family. It is an ongoing struggle. I haven’t fixed it really.
• What is the personal trait you mostly rely upon in your relationships with your children?
• What is your greatest fear for future communications with your children?
That they will stop sharing their thoughts and feelings with me.
• Do you have strategy for this? If not, what would help?
Other than trying to be there for them amongst all the distractions of daily life, no I’m afraid not. More money would help. So I didn’t have to work so much.
• When has it all gone wonderfully right, and why do you think that was?
When we dance and sing. I can do these things with them easily as I haven’t really grown up properly myself.
• What question do you think should be on this list?
Maybe something about how to help them understand the modern world honestly without scaring the shit out of them.
... AND NOW T'S ANSWERS...
• What annoys you about how adults speak to you?
When there’s a baby sister or someone that annoys you a lot and if she cries and points at you the adult might tell you off.
• How do you like a grown-up to be when they speak to you?
• What is good and what is bad about being a child?
Good: Having lots of good friends. Not doing all the work.
Bad: Not choosing your food. Being told what to do.
• Do you find it easy or difficult to talk with grown-ups, and why?
Usually easy. Sometimes difficult like when you’re getting told off and you don’t actually wanna say that you did it.
• Is it easy or difficult for you to speak with other children?
• Do you think adults understand you? Why / why not?
Yes. They usually know what you’re talking about.
• What lesson would you like grown-ups to learn about how to talk to children?
• What question do you think should be on this list? How would you answer it?
I’ll tell you when I've thought of something.