What can I do when my child and I are stuck and aren't speaking? Can I find a magical way to break through the impasse of not speaking due to a super charged argument? Yes I can, but only if I have done my own work of feeling heard and seen and experienced my own emotions and values. First, I journal or talk with a friend who can hear me without judgement and let me feel it all and be with it all. Vent! Feel! (This is different from being stuck, identified with my position of being "right" and needing to convince the other person they are "wrong".)
I notice my sensations of tightness...Jaw? Stomach? Shoulders? Throat? Head? Is my heart beating fast? Do I feel numb? Is there resistance? I tune into my feelings...angry? Frustrated? Sad? Hurt? Confused? Anxious? Numb? Uncertain? Where do I feel these in my body? Next I notice my values/longings...for understanding? For being Heard? For being seen for my intentions? For connection? For ease? For partnership and mutuality? The work connects me to my whole self so that I can be present and conscious to both myself and to my daughter.
The magic re-uniter is TOUCH. When I am in tune with my heart space and feeling love and respect again towards the person I was in an argument with, my child, my spouse, or my friend, then I am open to trying touch. With my daughter, she is fiery and passionate. We trigger each other and come to verbal blows. When I offer to give her a back-rub, it usually melts the resistance she was holding on to. It is a way to reconnect when words will just re-trigger. It is a way to show her I love and accept her, even though we had hard words and disagreed. No words. No re-engaging with the argument. And yet we feel connected and share love through touch.
Sometimes, a while into the back-rub, she'll be open to hearing what I am feeling and what I am valuing. And she's open to sharing what she is feeling and valuing. We take a step toward each other. We connect.