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Together we can avoid social mishaps and the proverbial foot in the mouth. What not to say (these are well-known, but worth repeating): I can’t believe your missionary is coming home. We tend to comment on appearance or future expectations, “You’ve grown so much! ” I’ve warned my kids people will inevitably talk about their height and school.They simply need to accept those comments in this stage of life.We talk a lot about learning not to be offended, but today let’s talk about how we can avoid meaningless platitudes and social gaffes.I think we’d all like to be the delightful person who says just the right thing.We were thrilled when I got pregnant later that year, and then gave birth to a healthy baby girl, whom we named Jessie.Everyone thought we were the perfect family -- even acquaintances commented about how cute we were together.After our wedding, we got even closer, doing almost everything together.My husband and I were so inseparable that I occasionally wondered if all that togetherness was normal.
Over and over people said to him, “Wow, your brothers have all had such interesting mission calls.
But if you really want to connect with kids and teens, talk to them about something besides their appearance, catch them doing something good and compliment them, or simply say ‘hello.’ Listening and complimenting are the twin super-powers in conversation. And now I’ve reached the end of my knowledge (it didn’t take long! Please share your own tips on what not to say, conversation starters and how to avoid turning into the annoying person at church.
I crossed a line, letting an office flirtation turn into something more.
After my fourth son received his mission call (Canada Montreal, Mandarin speaking!
) our friends and neighbors celebrated with us and shared all the usual tidbits of information about the mission and people they knew in the area, etc.
But I liked spending time with Scott, so I pushed aside my concerns.