Why is it so difficult? When your kids are growing out of babyhood into toddlerhood and throwing tantrums cause they haven’t yet learnt the art of communication, you assume that its going to get easier when they start talking right. Wrong, firstly they never shut up and secondly you are rarely told the things that you need to know and information can only be gathered by a process of extraction and elimination. Hopefully you can usually manage it in the end though.
Somewhere along the way between toddlerhood and the pre-teen age communication starts to dwindle. Yesterday I went to an open evening at a local high school (older boy is in year 6 and we need to fill in his application soon), and the Head took great delight in telling us that once kids start High School they communicate with you even less. For instance the conversation goes something like this, “what did you do today?”, “nothing”, what did you have for lunch? , can’t remember. Get the idea.
Older boy recently went on a school activity holiday and I have no idea what he ate, what the room he slept was like or which activity he enjoyed most, he told me very little, but I put it down to tiredness. I believe I will receive more information in dribs and drabs.
So what’s the answer, tempting though it is to interrogate with questions it isn’t that. At a guess, it is a combination of reading between the lines, waiting to be told whatever I want to know and fine tuning. Until then I will be doing a bit of random guesswork.