ON THE COUCH

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - LIFE -

From the tone of your let­ter, I think it’s of­ten you tak­ing her to task over what she says. Of course, you want your grand­daugh­ter to be as feisty as you were, but what you see as healthy de­bate might come across as cor­rec­tion.

I sus­pect you have less rea­son to lay down the law to her than her par­ents, so she won’t be used to you seem­ing to be ag­i­tated.

She’ll value your opin­ion a great deal and the last thing she’ll want to think is that you’re an­gry with her be­cause of what she thinks.

She needs plenty of prac­tice in ar­tic­u­lat­ing her thoughts, but she also needs to know she can do it safely. You can en­cour­age her to de­fend and de­velop her ar­gu­ments. She’s still at school, so she’s used to think­ing in terms of right or wrong, but life – and talk­ing about it – is more com­pli­cated than that.

You’re ide­ally placed to teach her all the skills needed to put your point across more subtly. Tell her hav­ing opin­ions isn’t the same as be­ing opin­ion­ated, but also that be­ing able to ex­press your­self freely is a priv­i­lege.

She’s within her rights to change her mind about things. Don’t for­get to tell her that she can dis­agree with you, too. – Daily Mail

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