Resolving Conflict Through a Sensible Approach
One day at the Collegium, I noticed that Nathan and Azhar were having a conversation. For some reason I sensed that there was an argument between them. I intervened and almost immediately Nathan left. I asked Azhar if everything was fine. He said he was upset and told me that Nathan and he were talking about daily chores. Azhar told me that he had informed Nathan that most of his needs were taken care by his mother to which Nathan seems to have got a little irritated. He then asked him what would happen if his mother died one day, where would he go if he did not learn to be independent and do things on his own. I told Azhar that Nathan probably meant to advise him, but he probably did not know how to convey it. I managed to calm him down and shortly after I spoke to Nathan who told me that he and Azhar were having a conversation and Azhar kept telling him that his mother does everything for him. He confessed that had irritated him since he knew Azhar was an adult. So he asked him what if his mother died one day, how will he be able to manage things on his own.
I first asked Nathan how old he was, and he replied he was 12. I told him that Azhar was in his late twenties and someone as old as him would generally not want to take advice from a younger boy. Secondly, I reminded him about Azhar’s condition as a young man with special needs. I told him it was very easy for someone like Azhar to feel offended, especially in the case of his mother whom he dearly loves. I told him that he had good intentions but because of the age and cultural differences he only managed to hurt Azhar’s feelings. I told him I would have tried to advise Azhar by rephrasing what he said. I told him he could have said “Azhar but somehow I like to do my things on my own even though I am only 12, as long as I can manage it. By doing so I learn a lot of things; I learn how to take care of myself, I become a better person and most importantly I give my mother much needed rest as I love her dearly”.
Nathan looked at me and said Yes, I probably could have done that. That’s a nice way of communicating what I wanted to without hurting Azhar’s feelings. I now understand!
I believe it is so important to be aware of the person whom we are relating to or talking to. Every person is different and unique and can have a mindset of their own. I firmly believe that we need to be mindful of what we say and how we say things. A sensitive approach is something that is wonderful to practice for healthy conversations and relationships.