Sat, Mar 26|
Dinner Without Tears: Navigating Difficult Conversations with Loved Ones
Time & Location
Mar 26, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
About the Event
Join Dr. Joan DeGeorge for a psychologically informed talk focusing on allies/people with privilege who want to have more effective discussions with friends/family/neighbors around human rights and progressive issues.
We all want to use facts when we argue - for example, explaining again that COVID is real, that it isn't possible for vaccines to carry microchips, that the 2020 election was not stolen from Donald Trump, etc. However, research tells us that when we argue with people who have deep-rooted viewpoints, using facts to try to convince them otherwise not only doesn't work but actually makes them MORE entrenched in their original beliefs. So, what are we supposed to do? Watch the people we care about drown in a sea of Facebook misinformation and clickbait hell? This talk aims to be an answer to that question.
Tips on how to be effective instead of right. Putting aside your knowledge of the topic and instead leaning into emotional and psychological strategies that tend to work when:
1) Deescalating high tension conversations
2) Getting people to actually listen
3) Allowing you to walk away less frustrated
4) Laying the groundwork for more productive future debates.
This talk will not help you "win" over your loved one - if you go in with that goal, you're already at a disadvantage. This talk is aimed at people with privilege, who are best able to handle incendiary things others say while remaining calm and countering with strategic responses. The presentation will include some research background, some examples of specific situations and some opportunities to role play.
About Dr. Joan DeGeorge (she/her)
Dr. DeGeorge holds a clinical PhD in psychology from UMass Amherst. She teaches psychology at Harvard University and Endicott College and is a published researcher with an emphasis on empathy as a therapeutic tool. She is a resident of Wenham.