Excessive Talkers, Please Listen
  By Vijai P. Sharma, Ph.D
 Students of Living 201 class are trying to understand excessive talkers or, "motor mouths," as a student gingerly calls them.  Some students in the class have excessive talkers among their relatives or friends.  These students are complaining that when they are with excessive talkers they never get a chance to put a word edge wise.  Personally, excessive talkers don't bother me because I have nothing to say anyway.  I am just glad that they are there, so I don't have to do the talking.  
I was astounded by the intensity of negative emotion that was generated by the talk about excessive talkers, evident in remarks such as these:  "They never stop talking and they never listen,"; "They permanently suffer from 'logorrhea' (verbal diarrhea)." 
Excessive talkers need our understanding and sympathy, not our anger.  In spite of all the talking, they are unable to tell others what's bothering them from the inside.  They're trying to reach out but at the same time keeping people at an arm's length with the barrier of their words.  They create a "wall of words," hide behind it and often get trapped inside it.  Through the armor of words, they defend themselves from getting hurt.  They sabotage intimate relationships by excessive talking and thus rendered lonely and distant. 
A chatterbox listens to his or her own words, therefore, doesn't get a chance to learn from others.  In his or her own heart what a chatterbox wants is an absolutely safe and everlasting relationship, but doesn't know how to get it.  
If you are a friend or a relative of a chatterbox, tell him or her, "I am  really concerned about you.  You gotta get it in control by yourself or seek help."              
file: empathy 7/18/97 index: self-development, empathy.


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