Eye Contact

There is something that has been bothering me for some time.

Every now and then (like once a day) I’ll realize that I’ve been interacting with Cameron for some time and haven’t looked at him once. Some days it’s from the time we get up until we’re getting coats on to head out the door. Some times it’s even when we’re playing in the living room!

So when I realize this I make an effort to make eye contact and actually connect with him. I’ll get down to his level, and talk to him.

But he won’t look at me. He’ll look off to one side, then if I move into his line of sight, off to the other. Today we played vision ping-pong.

We’re slowly becoming a family that doesn’t look at each other. Which disturbs me. Am I freaking out? Over-analyzing? Being too self-critical? I’m concerned because looking at someone is a good way to convey to them that they are important to you. Making eye contact while talking improves communication.

I find it hard to focus on someone when they’re talking. It’s part of who I am – my attention flips from here to there and back again and around, up, down. Other times, like mornings, I’m just focused on getting us moving, dressed, fed, brushed, and out the door. The “Mommy I want …” requests often come at the worst times, and I absently oblige while doing whatever it was I was already doing.

Am I teaching Cameron that he isn’t important?

And why oh why do I have trouble making eye contact with him when we talk? Why is this something I have to make an effort to do? Is this normal?

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3 responses to “Eye Contact

  1. Huh… good point. I’m going to oversee how I talk to Cody now. I think I make eye contact with eyebrows in a growl when he DOESN’T listen… eahhh…

    I think as moms doing it all and it’s all up to us, we are always multitasking. We’re rattling off instructions while we are doing just as much ourselves. It’s like jogging along side someone while talking. We’re jogging so we look forward and just know we’re being heard so we don’t make an effort to connect via eyes.

    But you’re right on. We need to make that time. Cody often says, “Mom are you listening?”

    I most certainly know of the times when I DO make the time. He’ll say something and I’ll dance over his way and touch him in some way and my eyes warm all over him like a big hug and enthusiastically listen like he’s the only one on earth. BIG diff from a busy typical school morning!

    Thanks for the heads up!

  2. I have known for years that I am a flippy eye-contact person as well. I really try to look people in the eye for the duration of a conversation, but I do find my gaze wanders everywhere else but. I often wonder why as well. I don’t feel intimidated by people, in fact I realy enjoy talking with people and getting to know them, but I think I am simply over-stimulated by everything else around me.

    As for you and Cameron, I do find getting down to their level helps a LOT, especially when the whining starts. And, yes, it forces you to look him in the eye.

    You’re doing great 😉

  3. good point. now that you mentioned it, most of the eye contact I do have with him is when Im trying to talk to him and make him listen. or when he is throwing a tantrum

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