All of us at one point or the other have been confronted with this situation: When there is a huge elephant in the room but nobody wants to talk about it. I’m talking about those awkward moments when you either are with a group of people or just one other person, there is something weighing heavily on all your minds, which for some reason you just cannot talk about. This ‘elephant’ wont fade to the back of your head, it will block all your other thought processes and make conversation difficult, because it’s hard to think of anything else to talk about.
The elephant might be something you are extremely curious about, but the person/people in question are just not open to discuss it and you know it. What’s worse, they know that you want to know. Or it might be the other way around. It might be something that pertains to you that you prefer not to discuss but the look on the other person’s face makes you remember it every few minutes. There’s yet another one when together as a group you get caught up in something very embarrassing which nobody wants to talk about after, but nobody can think of anything else to say. I like to call them ‘my elephant’, ‘your elephant’ and ‘our elephant’ respectively.
I don’t know if it’s just me, or in general the older you get, or the more people you meet, you only have more and more elephants in life to deal with! On my part if the elephant is ‘mine’ or ‘ours’, I break the ice and talk about it. I find that it saves me a lot of energy wasted being awkward. But if the elephant is someone else’s there’s nothing I can do about it, is there?
One example I can think of is a conversation with a not-so-close-but-more-than-just-an-acquaintance friend who’d broken up from a very serious relationship. Well I know the person had broken up, heck the noise made the whole world know, but when you talk to them it’s like nothing happened! I’m not saying tell me all the gory details, all I say is- when you once publicly displayed your affection for each other with me among the uncomfortable spectators it’s just kind, to let me know that, ‘Oh by the way we broke up’. That’s all I ask! Please do not leave that big red with yellow polka dotted elephant hanging in the air.
Well, until the whole world shares my opinion on addressing elephants, I just have to find a lot of conversation topics! Here’s one thing that doesn’t work: Running away to a different continent. Nope, the multi-coloured elephants will follow you.