I recently led a Toastmasters meeting. (We take turns being the ‘toastmaster’ who leads the group through a ritualistic course of events). One role of the toastmaster is to pick a theme for the day, and we usually go around and everyone responds to a question posted related to that theme.
Because I had recently been thinking and writing about conversations around money between children and parents, I chose that as my topic and asked for a short story or reflection about either their relationship with their parents around money, or how they have or planned to talk with their children around money.
I was very surprised that the responses were longer, deeper, and more heartfelt than usual. It was clearly a deeply meaningful topic for those present. It brought up some tough topics, but it was clear that people wanted to open up in this way.
It is possible that it was much easier because we were not family. But I think it demonstrates a likelihood that many of us crave discussion about difficult subjects and do not have enough opportunity to engage in such discussion.
How can we create that space in families and communities?
Should you read this and think, yes, that’s me! Let me know and I’m ready to listen.