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Geshman t1_j69fw3r wrote

You can ask questions directly like:

"do you want me to talk or do you just need me to listen?"

"Do you want advice or someone to listen"

You can listen and repeat back what they say to really understand their problem:

"So you are having trouble with x"

You can do your best to empathize:

"That sounds so tough I'm sorry"

Or, alternatively, you can put up a personal boundary:

"Hey, I'm really sorry, that sounds tough but I really don't have the capacity to help/listen right now"

From there you can maybe point them to someone who can help

"I do know of this resource you could maybe try"


JHtotheRT t1_j6f3wto wrote

The first two on this list are key. A lot of times people venting just want you to go ‘mmm yeah’, ‘oh that sucks’, ‘I can’t believe that happened to you’

Sorting out those times from the people who want advice is important


Geshman t1_j6f4zvx wrote

Yup, it definitely helps with my spouse. Sometimes she doesn't want me to fix something she just wants me to listen


JHtotheRT t1_j6f5qos wrote

Haha same - it has helped a lot in the communication with the girlfriend