Don’t Talk to Strangers – Tell Them Everything

by Ian

in Interview

Ever spilled your guts to a complete stranger?

There you are, sitting on a bus, having a quiet drink or just happen to meet someone out of the blue and before you know what’s happened you find yourself telling everything to this complete stranger. Have you ever noticed how you don’t do that with family?

Telling Your Story to a Stranger

All of Your Story new to a stranger

We love our family and we love catching up, after all they know the back-story and we don’t need to talk about many things they already understand or we’ve agreed that we won’t talk about certain things.

Sitting and telling our life story to family is one of those delicate things, where family is too close. They know us too well. There is just too much stuff that we both know about each other with too many connections, like pieces of string, forming the net that carries all our baggage. Sometimes despite our love for them, family is just too close.

After all how would you deal with those delicate questions… You know the questions I’m talking about. The times when you were very human, made mistakes and probably embarrassed more than just yourself.

Look at it from their point of view.

Do you really want to know about the love life of your parents – Nooooooo! *sticks fingers in ears*.
Note: There was no sex before you were born and your parents certainly never did anything like that, let alone any sordid behaviour that would be in direct conflict to the way in which they said you should behave, even if it does mean your existence.

And we all know what we got up to… don’t we? No, some things are just too close, too intimate, to discuss with family.

We need someone removed from immediate family.

Anyone who’s to sit and record our story needs to have a general overview of our life. The overall who, what, when and how questions of our life. They need to know of the general events and let all the rest of the information become apparent over the course of the conversation. Instead of having a son or daughter sit and record the conversation with us we can step back and ask someone else.

  • Niece or Nephew
  • Grandchild
  • Family friend
  • Personal friend
  • Social/community/work associate
  • Hired Professional

The relationship they have with the person will vary depending on how close to the centre of the family relationship bulls-eye they are. The closer to the centre the more knowledge they inherent have and the more intimate the understanding of the overall picture but also the more baggage they carry. The further away from the centre the less knowledge they have and a stronger desire to fill in the full picture, digging deeper into topics and discovering subjects that will surprise family. They also have no baggage and can innocently ask those questions family would never ask.

A non-intimate family member or a stranger, can ask what we could never ask and what wonderful stories could come from that.

Have you told a stranger something you couldn’t share with family? Tell us you experience in the comments below.

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