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One day I was visiting some friends of mine who have a little daughter named Claire. I was not at their home very long when Claire took me to her play room. She introduced me to her stuffed animals and dolls, calling each of them by name.

Four-year old Claire told me about what her stuffed animals and dolls had done, the times that they had been good and the times she had to spank them. She went on telling me who never went to bed on time and who was the first to get up in the morning.

A few days later Claire’s mother called me and told me that Claire had drawn four stick figures, one of whom had a head with big circles on each side instead of ears. The figures were Claire’s mother and father, her older brother and me. The one with the big circles on his head was me.

“What are those circles on Father’s head?” Claire’s mother asked her. “Those are his ears,” she said proudly. “Father really listens to me. He makes me feel special.”

Most people do not listen to understand,
They simply listen so that they can then do the talking.

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