[E187] Labels, Language, and Dignity

Episode 187 April 09, 2024 00:40:44
[E187] Labels, Language, and Dignity
Empowered to Connect Podcast
[E187] Labels, Language, and Dignity

Apr 09 2024 | 00:40:44


Show Notes

Today we sit down as a team to talk about…. how we talk about things! What is the impact of our labels? What can we keep in mind about our language? How can we speak to and about people in a way that honors their dignity?

Listen for reflections on times we’ve said things and regretted them and how we’re moving forward!

To learn more about Empowered to Connect, check out our website, follow us on social media and YouTube!


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Episode Transcript

[00:00:04] Speaker A: Welcome to the Empowered to connect podcast, where we come together to discuss a healing centered approach to engagement and well being for ourselves, our families and our communities. I'm JD Wilson. I'm your host. And today on the show we got Jesse McKay, Jesse Ferris and Becca McKay. That's the right names. And we're going to talk with them today about something that is vital to our organization, to empower, to connect, vital to how we operate internally. And it is a part of lots of the different trainings that we do and give out around the state and globally as well. And so we're going to talk about how we talk about Dot, Dot, dot. We're going to talk about how we talk about different things that can be in some way, shape or form dicey for lack of a better term. And so Jesse and Becca are going to just share with us their thoughts on that. We'll share our own stories of when we noticed that language becoming either offensive or didn't sit right or rubbed us wrong the wrong way and helped us to evolve and develop the way that we talk about things like adoption or things like foster care, stuff like that. So all those things are coming up. We're super excited to have them with us today. I'm always a treat to have both Jesse and Becca. So now, without any further ado, here they are, Jesse, Becca and myself, talking about. About how we talk about stuff. Okay, so Jesse and Becca are with us. And guys, we're going to talk today about how we talk about things. And that is a very broad, generic title, obviously. But if we can, why don't we jump right into it? And Becca, do you mind just kind of framing this conversation and kind of why it's important, then we'll jump into some of the reasoning behind why. [00:01:57] Speaker B: Absolutely. Really what we want to highlight today is just how important language is, how we talk about people, how we talk about situations, how we talk about differences. All these things are just super important. And I think that is one of those things that we do things so automatically. And you all know, like our brain wants things to be super quick and efficient. So your brain is just hardwired to put people in quick categories and to summarize and to lump things together. And so really being thoughtful about how you're talking about things takes time. Like it takes that reflective pause to be able to kind of focus in and think about not only what am I trying to communicate, but how is that being received by the other person? And I think we could all probably think of times when how someone talked about us or to us really impacted us in some ways. I'll break the ice and share the first one that comes to my mind. I grew up, my parents were missionaries overseas, and we would come back to the state very rarely, like, once every four years. And when we came back, we would do the circuit where we'd visit churches that were supporting us. And in those churches, they're. They're talking to you as if you are the person of Jesus Christ, just to be honest. Like, y'all are incredible. This is amazing. You're so young, and you live in the former Soviet Union. Like, it's just this big, big thing. And so I think if I can think back now with my adult brain, there was a lot of pressure to be perfect. So, again, what the people intended was to show gratitude and appreciation and encouragement. That was a great intention. How I felt that as a little kid was a lot of pressure to be perfect and to show up in a certain kind of way. So that's, like, just one example of someone's intentions and how they're talking to you or about you then can kind of, like, impact you in some different ways. Jessie, what pops to your mind with that? [00:04:05] Speaker C: Well, I love how you talk about intention, because I think that's just a gracious way to remind all of us that, I mean, people are doing the best that they can, right? Like, they're. They're not most of the time, people are not trying to hurt your feelings. I've got a really general one that we do all the time. But I'll tell you why. It hits me wrong, and I think that's very individual to me. I really don't like when people ask me as a woman, do you work? Yeah, guys, we all work. We all do things that we either get paid to do or we don't get paid to do. But everybody works. And especially as a woman, as a mom in my house, I want my girls to know it doesn't matter whether I get paid to do it or not. I do work. So when I ask that question to other people, I might say, what do you do during the day? Or what takes up your time during the day? Or I'm asking them how they spend their time, because I know when people ask me, do you work? To Becca's point, their intention is just to find out, what do I do during the day? Right? Like, what? I don't want what I do to be my identity. And I think we'll talk about that in a minute. A lot of times, we are just as Becca said, to our. To our detriment, but also just the way our brains work, we're categorizing people and identifying them either by what they do or by where they came from or what's happened to them. And so, yeah, I will intentionally turn that question around when they say, do you work? And I'll say, oh, yeah, I do. Are you asking about, like, if I do paid work? Yeah, I do. I do some paid work, and I do some volunteer work, and then I tell them about that. Or maybe I'll, you know, back when I was staying home with my kids all day long, I would say, yes, I do work as a stay at home mom all day long. You know, and you could be gracious in your answer, but inwardly, that. That one hits wrong. I'm wondering if y'all have anything else like that. [00:06:15] Speaker A: Yeah, I mean, I immediately thought of the. Similar to what you shared, like, the lionization of adoption or the. Or the kind of, like, nobility instilling of adoption. And I I know that when we first, uh, when we first brought our oldest home, um, he is black. We are not. So, as we're, like, carrying him through the church building, it was like, this, uh, only thing I could equate it to is the movie Apollo 13, when the astronauts are, like, walking back down the gangway after they get out of the ship, and everyone's, like. Like, standing and looking at all at them and clapping. Like, it was never anyone's intention to do anything other than just, like. Like, kind of, like, show. Like, oh, this is great, and we're with you, and. And we're so happy for this new life in your home, and. But the way that it. The unintended consequences of that kind of, like, keeping of praise was number one. [00:07:21] Speaker C: It. [00:07:22] Speaker A: It. It didn't build, like, an arrogance within us. What it built within me is, like, when I was struggling as a parent, I'm like, well, I can't tell. I can't tell this crowd about it because they feel like we hung the moon, and all of a sudden, they, like, they helped us fundraise for this adoption. And then all of a sudden now, like, I'm going to come and tell them that I'm incompetent, that I'm not worthy of receiving the money that they, you know, gave toward. Toward this adoption. Like, I can't share that with them. Like, this is, like, our mission. This is what we're supposed to be doing. Like, we're supposed to be prepared for this. And. And that was, again, never anyone's intention, I would imagine. And if it was, you know what, then I like to have a word with that person. But, like, if it was not their intention, then just unintended consequences. But those things matter. Like, it mattered that we, that we had a community we could go to when we were struggling. And it took us, I feel like, far too long to be able to have a safe place to open up, to say we are lost and don't know what we're doing and need some help. And when we were finally able to do that, it was a game changer. But we weren't able to do that in our first community because it was such a difficult dynamic to overcome. Right. [00:08:40] Speaker C: I think you're really pointing out that the power that language has, JD, like, in the labels that we give people unintended in the way that we talk about situations unintended and who we talk about them with and who we talk about them in front of, all of it has so much power. And I very much think about it in the unintended consequences. Right. But I also think about, I mean, obviously we all trip up and say things not what we mean to say. It was just a meeting last week where the words that were coming out of my, it was a late meeting in the day, and the words that were coming out of my mouth, I was like, my brain was saying to myself, like, this is not what you mean. But I just didn't have the presence of mind or the stress capacity at the moment. Or sometimes I think maybe what we're doing in this podcast is saying sometimes we just don't have the language to say it a different way. Maybe you think, oh, I've never thought about, like how I ask people about that, about what they do during the day or how I ask people about their adoption experience or how I fundraise for an adoption in the language that I use for that. Like, all of that is so important. I remember being in tears after going to a pediatrician visit with right after our first adoption. And so with our oldest child, and I was checking in, and because it was my first child, the person at the desk was adding information about me and our family. And she said, do you have any kids of your own? And she asked in front of my toddler, and I remember feeling very aware. My new daughter just heard her ask this, and I want my daughter to know that she is my child. And so I said back to her, friendly, this is my own daughter. And she said, well, you know what I mean? And I said, I can't remember how I got out of it? But I remember crying about it later that day just because I had been put in a difficult position with the language that she used, and she did not. As she indicated to me, she didn't know that it was offending me or putting me in a tricky position. She just wanted to know, do I have biological children? To add to the file? I wanted her to know, adopted children are our own children. They have just as much a seat at the table in our families as anyone else, you know. And there's so much subtext and context to language that lies underneath that. What's interesting is I remember mentioning it in a social media post, and someone connected to that practice, that pediatric practice, reached out to me and was like, we would never want you to feel like that. Like, from the organization level, that was not what they valued or the way they wanted to show up. But language is so, like, we carry our life experiences in the way we've been taught to talk about things into whatever we're saying in any given moment. So I guess just to say, man, we can heap grace upon that. And I love what Becca said, that she said something about her adult brain thinking about it later. And I think it highlights that we do evolve in our language. We do change, and we do kind of learn as we learn more in life. And this still happens as adults because we're still learning as adults. We learn different ways to talk about things and say things better. And often it's from our own experiences that we're taught that. But I think we can learn from each other, too. [00:12:36] Speaker B: If you're listening and you're starting to feel resistance just bubbling up, if you're starting to feel this sense of, like, we just can't talk about anything, why do you have to be so sensitive? If that is bubbling up inside of you, I just want to name that. I think that that is a normal feeling. I think that a lot of people feel tired by the thought of man, I just can't say anything right, and so I'm just going to shut down. Well, then I guess I just won't ask anyone how they're doing, ever, because I could say it wrong. So if you start, yeah, if you're starting to have those kinds of feelings as you listen, one, I think the three of us have all been there. Two, we don't want this conversation to make you feel shut down, or I don't even know, or I'm probably doing everything wrong, or we don't want that kind of, like, panic or resistance but we, but we do want to push in a little bit to that uncomfortable, uncomfortable feeling, that uncomfortable place. And we've, I mean, we've decided, I think, as an organization and individually that we just want to be gracious and compassionate and caring to the people that we come in contact with. And we are 100% going to say stuff, quote unquote wrong. I'm doing air quotes sometimes. That's often. [00:13:54] Speaker C: It's not that we used to do this. We still do it. [00:13:57] Speaker B: We'll still do it. It's not about like scaring yourself out of even opening your mouth, but it is about being willing to take feedback from the people around you, being willing to make adjustments when needed, and just being willing to like, step into the conversation, not with a well, you're just being too sensitive and instead with a well, I wonder why that really matters. And you mentioned it, Jesse, because a lot of these things come back to our identity. So instead of being like, well, she just, she knew what I meant by own kid. Why did she even, that was just her being sensitive instead. Oh, that is feedback for me. And that could inform how I talk to other parents in the future. Not that, that, you know what I mean? It doesn't have to be like a, like a catastrophic event. It's just a little tweaking. [00:14:43] Speaker C: It's with people. Right. This is the heart of connection. It's showing I value what you think. I value your voice. I value the way that you see yourself. That's part of the way that we connect with people. And I think that's why it's so woven into the fabric of who we are at empowered to connect. [00:15:00] Speaker A: So you might, like, like Beck mentioned, be listening to this and, and the next natural question is like, okay, well, how am I ever going to learn if I'm just saying things offensively and I have no idea. So here's what I would say. And I'll, I'll tell myself, I'll share this story. This is, I mean, but when you said we're still going to every now and then, like, it's, it's, I mean, it's, I would say I'm in the often category where I'm just talking and not thinking about something I'm saying and unintentionally say something offensive to somebody now because I have friends who love me and will tell me the truth over time that has, and the wife who does that for me, very well. Like over time that has like, informed how I seek out feedback, how I get feedback, all that. So this is yours? No. One of my best friends from years and years and years ago, recently going through the hardest time of his life. And we were supposed to get together, uh, with several of us, and, um, and it wasn't going to work out for, uh, for him for one reason or another or something. I was like, well, hey, why don't we get to the later? You know? Uh, we could do it different times. Like, it's not going to work later. Um, man, I'm just really disappointed. And I just said, oh, man, listen, I totally get it. It's no big deal. Like, we can do it again some other time. And because the circumstances that this friend was going through, like, there was no guarantee there was going to be another time or that, or that in the foreseeable future, we had in the window for us to get together again. And so privately he messaged and just said, I just want you to know because I love you. You don't get it. Like, you've never been through what I'm going through right now, and this is not something that I take lightly or something that you can understand what I'm going through. So please don't say I get it like that because you, because you don't. And I'm only sharing this with you just so that you understand how that comes across. But, like, I've been looking forward to this for weeks, and now this stupid weather thing happens and we can't get together and, and now I don't know when the next time is that we're going to get to be together. And I'm just so sad about it. I needed a break. And so just, I just want you to know, like, you could say in the future, like, I'm so sorry, or, I'm so sad with you. Um, but, but please don't say, like, I understand, and try to. Try to draw an analogy to something different. And, I mean, listen, does that feel great when it happens? Of course not. It feels miserable. And I immediately was just like, oh, I'm so sorry. I did not know how that came across. But before I lashed out with this giant apology, I was like, uh, this is like all things. I was going to, I was going to share. He already shared. Hey, you don't have to have some big apology. You like, I just want you to know, here's how you can say this in the future. So he equipped me as a friend just to know, here's why that hurt. Here's something different you could say that would not, that would communicate your sadness with me without like, triggering in that particular way. And here's why. This is a big deal to us. And that was so helpful. And it made me think twice every time before I communicated with him to make sure that I wasn't saying something insensitive. And now if we have other friends that are in a similar situation, like, I don't talk the same way as I would have before, and that's just, guys, that's just growth. Like, that's just how we grow, is having people who love us enough to point out, hey, I don't think you meant this, but this actually came across this way. So the two things I wanted to point out in this are, like, one, he could have easily just had that same internal reaction and not told me. And, like, this. This dude thinks he knows what I'm going through. Like, he has no idea. And it probably would have driven a wedge between us that I had no idea was there. Right? Or he could have lashed out and been like, how dare you say, you know what, I'm going. You have no idea. Like, instead, just in love and with a calm demeanor, like, shared with me, hey, this is why this hurt. Here's something you can say differently next time. And I think when I heard that, I could say, I could just swallow my pride and say, I'm so sorry. I did not know that was going to come out that way. Thank you for sharing with me, like, how I can say this differently. And so, yes, I am so sad with you about this. That has bolstered our friendship in a way that we both can share brutally honest things with each other without much of a filter, because we know that the other one will share if it some way rubs us the wrong way. So, long story to say, those are two of the ways that we can interact where with, it's going to help propel knowledge and empower each other to communicate the proper way. [00:19:48] Speaker C: Jd, I love that story because that is secure attachment. And I know that we're not talking about attachment styles in this particular episode, but if you listen with us, you know, this is something that we. That's just part of what we take with us in every conversation. And it is the ability to be present to somebody else's experience without defensiveness, without getting entangled in it, without dismissing it. It's just being present. I'm even thinking about a way that I learned to change. Something I said this year was a friend of ours shared that when you say I'm sorry, in response to a death in the family or something really serious going on, that sometimes it can come across as dismissive, like, did that said the thing I'm supposed to say. I asked, what do you think is a better response to that? And she said, I think it is. What happened to you matters to me. What a golden statement. And that's what you're saying. Your friend wanted you. The heart. It's just secure attachment. What happens to you matters to me. It doesn't. It's not my story, but it matters to me what's going on inside of you. And I just love that. [00:21:10] Speaker A: Yeah. Yeah. [00:21:12] Speaker B: There's so many layers to this conversation that we could just keep peeling back. And I think. I think one thing that I want to highlight is, like, we're all just learning, and it's really going to depend on the people in your life to give you that feedback. So if you're not in friendships where y'all can be honest about how things are coming across, I would say cultivate that kind of friendship with people. Cultivate relationships where you can take that feedback and you can really take it to heart. I also think sometimes this can feel like a right versus wrong kind of conversation. And to use a silly example, like, we could fight to the death over whether it's caramel or caramel. We could fight to the death over whether it's pecan or pecan. If I go somewhere in the. I'm going to get it wrong, but let's pretend. Well, let's say I'm going to the north, and they're saying beg instead of bag. Okay? If I show up there, here in the United States, in the northern, northern part of the country, and I just start going, it's not big, you're wrong. It's bag, you're wrong. Like, if I show up in someone else's context, it's not soda, it's telling, it's not soda, it's coke. Great. Even better example, then I'm missing the point. The point is that there's some things that are just contextual, that are cultural. There are some things that you adjust based on where you are, based on. Based on what you're talking about. I also just want to add that layer as we. As we keep trucking through this conversation. I don't want it to feel like if you say blank, you're wrong. If you say blank, you're right. But it does matter what you say and what I think. What makes something, you know, you said secure attachment. I think what makes you a securely attached person is the ability to be with other people, even when there's differences, if that makes sense. [00:23:08] Speaker C: Absolutely. And I think, too, like, even some of those preferences are individual to the unique person. I think potentially what I shared about not loving when people ask, do I work? That might just be a Jesse thing. I don't know. And it's not wrong to ask that question the way that Becca is saying. It's just being curious to know people. You know, I'm thinking about a story in a religious context about that. I heard once about the way that we can label things without thinking about it. And it was this idea that there was. And this makes me think, too, JD, about the way that we fundraise for adoptions and such. But the story that I heard that gave me pause was this group of christians were raising money for a well in a developing country and that the people needed access to fresh water. This is a great thing to raise money for. Right. And it was wonderful that they wanted to use what they had and their resources to help. The name of the fund was the least of these and the least of these fund. And they gathered money over, I think, probably a holiday season. They gathered enough to fund the well. And when they went to this developing country and built the well, what they didn't realize is that the name of the fund would be inscribed onto the well. And so this well has inscribed on it the least of these. And the people receiving water from this well or coming to this well labeled the least of these. And it just gave me so much great pause of, like, a phrase that's commonly used and pulled from scripture that was never meant to be used to belittle someone's dignity or worth as a person. [00:25:06] Speaker A: Right. [00:25:07] Speaker C: And it makes me think about, what are our similar phrases, like, the least of these that we're putting on people in groups, and we're asking them to sit under that, under that phrase, and it belittles them. It makes them feel demeaned and like that they are not worthy of what is what everyone is worthy of, of love and belonging and dignity and worth. Right. So I think this is one of the, like, unintended consequences. Right. Like there. It wasn't intended for this to go sideways like that, but I think a lot of things that we say or have carried certain types of language into, you know, our current presentation are brought from somewhere that we don't realize, and they're having unintended consequences. I think even about the phrase put up for adoption. Did you guys know that that comes from being put up on a slave auction block? Yeah, like, we did not want to use that phrase. There are people in the adoption world that will use that phrase. A lot of people will be like, what am I supposed to say? And said, and you can say phrases like placed for adoption, made an adoption plan, there will be birth parents that say put up for adoption. But I think that we just have to think about the, about the consequences of our language and like we've shared, we don't get it right always, but just being curious and humble to be like, whoa, I did not intend that. And to use our, our values of repair and, you know, making it better the next time, I think that we. [00:26:52] Speaker B: Can follow that as an organization, too. Over the years, many people have heard, empowered to connect, use the phrase kids from hard places. And that was a thoughtful language choice to replace bad kids, horrible kids, wild kids, traumatized kids. And so that was some of the early founders trying to be thoughtful. And, and then as we've, you know, as an organization, walked through different conversations with adult adoptees and people who have given us some more information, we've heard, hey, like, you're assuming that I'm a hard place or you're putting a label on me that I don't, I don't want to carry. And so we've been trying to drop that phrase. You haven't heard it on the etc. Podcast. You don't see it in any of our new materials. So it's not, this conversation, again, is not, you do your best and then you stick to your guns. This conversation is, you do your best, you listen for feedback, you adjust. You do your best, you listen for feedback, you adjust. [00:27:59] Speaker C: And that's going to always be adjusting. You can listen to this podcast in this year and then listen to it in 20 years and it's not going to hold still. Like, we need to be changing. We need to be adjusting based on the way that people prefer to be talked about, right? Yeah, we just need to hear what that, what they value, they don't define by what they do. They don't want to be defined by what happened to them. [00:28:29] Speaker A: None of us do. Right. Like, I think that's the thing to keep in mind is that there are, we've talked in this podcast about differences in family origins, differences in ethnicity or race, differences in geographical birthplaces and then, like, culture within language and all those things, and pop versus coke versus soda versus water and water and bags and bags and all that. So like, talks about all those different things today. And in each of those situations, people who reside in the majority of those situations are going to dominate the cultural uses of different language. People from outside of those cultures don't know what they don't know. And so when, when there's a blending or emerging of cultures, those coming from kind of the outside culture in need to be ready to learn and listen and be willing to understand what they don't know. And so that's a, that's a really broad way of just saying when you're stepping into a culture that's not yours, have your mind open. Be willing to listen and learn. Ask questions. Hey, you know what? I don't know if this is the right phrase or not. Is this. And say that nine times out of ten. 9.9 times out of ten, anyone who kind of leads with a question like that in a genuine humility, wanting to learn, is going to be received well and say, oh, gosh, no, we actually don't say that like that. That's wildly offensive to us. And you didn't know that, but here's the phrase we use instead. Right. So I just think that, you know, if you've, for example, been on a mission trip before and you've done any kind of training beforehand, there's a lot of emphasis placed or there, there should be on cultural awareness, cultural competency, knowing that, like, when we sit down for a meal in this culture, like, food is very, very important. And so to turn away food is, is a slap in the face to the host that you are going with. So we're going to eat it so you might not like it. And that's fun. This will be a great experience. Like, you're going to eat the food, you're going to say thank you. We're going to take our shoes off when we eat, will enter a home or go, you know, so, like, you learn how to, uh, assimilate into that culture as a sign of respect. And so that, that is all this is. Is like, this is not trying to be culturally or politically correct. This is not trying to get woke or something like that. Like, what we're trying to do is to, um, is to show respect to all people we interact with, because all the people we interact with deserve dignity and respect from us, um, the best that we can give. So, um, one silly example, and then we can kind of start to wrap up with my life as an interior designer. And so, um, for years and years, uh, you know, she's doing her thing and learning and just, you know, like in. In the world, making stuff beautiful wherever she goes. And, um, I noticed that, that she started. I was looking at some plans that she was drawing. And I was like, what's a, what's a PB? I was like, I know what an MB is. What's a PB? Or a like, I was like, what's a pee bath? And she's like, primary. And I was like, what the heck is that? And she's like, well. And she just looked at me like, how do you not know this? And, and then she goes, oh, I guess you wouldn't know this. And she's like, well, we just started trying to change language away from saying master bath or master bedroom and just saying primary instead. Because she was like, I, we were talking the day and realized like, oh, that really is derived from kind of plantation language of the masters quarters. Like, and we don't want to perpetuate that, so we're just going to change to the same primary instead. And sure enough, as I'm, like, looking at her different, like, interior design magazines or just publications, whatever, they're around the house, that shift has happened. I had no idea. And I still catch myself saying that, you know, all the time, like, plumbers have come in, like, where's the issue? Isn't the master bath? I'm like, yeah, uh, yeah, in the main bathroom, the primary bathroom. Like, so it's just something simple that we can do as a shift that we can, we can make to be conscious of respecting people around us. So, um, guys, final thoughts as we kind of wrap up this conversation that could go ten more hours. [00:32:44] Speaker B: I have some, like, where do you start? If you're, if you're like, okay, I'm hearing you, but I. That this is a lot. And so if you're trying to figure out where to start, we do have a couple guidelines that we try to use here. As we talk about things and as we come into new places and new contexts, we try to apply these. So the first one is just, is this adjective or descriptor even necessary? A lot of times we add descriptions where we don't have to. Like, if you're telling a story about your kids, do you have to say, my adopted black child did xyz? Or could it just be my son, my daughter, my kiddo? Like, do you have to have the adjective there? And if you're putting it there, are you putting it there in a way that honors the person you're talking about? Or are you trying to get something for yourself? Like, are you trying to get a little street cred? Are you trying to get a little recognition? I've been there for sure in ways that I've talked about other people, and so are we just being thoughtful about, is this adjective needed? Is it honoring the other person? Is my nonverbal and verbal communication humble, discerning, thoughtful? Am I taking that pause to just kind of put, put myself into a thoughtful posture year? Lots of times, if you're not sure using person first language can be helpful, a person who is adopted, a child who has a learning disability, a family who has been through medical trauma, putting the person first before the description is a lot of times is a lot of times helpful. And I'll put a caveat here. If you are kind of up with the trends of the day, people on the autism spectrum specifically have said, no, I want you to call me an autistic person because it's part of my identity that I'm proud of. So, again, even when you hear these guidelines, what we really want you to hear is listen to your people. Be willing to adjust whenever you can. The categories that we really want to handle with care. If we're describing someone else's racial or ethnic or ethnic descriptions, if we're giving physical descriptions of people, do you have to say it was the tall, fat man or could you just say it was the man? Like, there are some things that we do that, you know, let's just be thoughtful about how we're talking about that. What about ability and disability? What about family makeup? That's something we've hit on a lot in this episode. And then what about trauma, grief and loss? It's okay if you're hearing this and you're like, but I don't know what to replace it with yet. That's okay. Just kind of dig in, listen to other people, get into the conversation, I guess. Just be willing to listen. That's my main, you know, as you talk, just be willing to listen. That would be kind of my closing, my closing thoughts. Jessie, what would you add? [00:35:28] Speaker C: Oh, I'm just thinking. I'm thinking about this way that Martin Luther King junior actually talked about kind of the trajectory of humanity's behavior, and he talked about the moral arc of the universe bending towards justice. And I kind of think about our language that way, like we're just bending toward right ways of relating with each other. Right. And it's an arc. It's bending that way. And so I hope that we're constantly improving the way that we do that. Maybe we're not going to say orphans anymore because that's something that happened to someone, that's not who someone is. Maybe that changed to kids from hard places. But after getting some feedback from people who sat under that label, it didn't feel great to them. So then maybe we're going to say something like kids who've experienced adversity or kids who've experienced trauma. And you know what's interesting is now that we have been using that in our curriculum, you know what we end up using a lot kids. Because guess what? A lot of us need what we're saying. Kids from adversity need. Every child deserves a safe adult. That's just every child, right? This past summer, I was even challenged with this idea of special needs are human needs. We talk about kids or people with special needs. Guess what? It's not wrong to need things. We all need things. And that's not meant in a dismissive way of the needs that people have medically or intellectually, whatever they're needing in their life. But let's stop othering people with our language and start being a little more inclusive. All kids deserve the kind of care that we at empowered to connect are trying to provide, right? So, yeah, it's like, let's just keep bending towards justice, keep bending towards redemption in the way that we operate in the world and operate, you know, and relate rightly towards people. [00:37:42] Speaker A: That's really good, guys, thank you for this one just last piece of encouragement. Some people in this conversation are not going to care how you use your words if they know that you love them and they'll correct you when you need to be corrected. So don't. Don't feel the need to walk on eggshells. Just feel the need to, like, strive to show respect to everybody that you interact with and that will help that language to bend as you go. So for Becca, for Jesse, I'm JD, and we'll see you next time. Okay? A huge thanks to Becca and to Jesse for joining us. And listen, this is a hard conversation. This is not a one episode and fixed conversation. But we wanted to start the conversation, conversation there, too, just to give you something to think about, to give some guidelines and some helpful rhetoric and feedback just to think about as you interact with different people all throughout your day. So hopefully that was helpful if that was something that you, a conversation you ate up and you really enjoyed having that conversation. That is part of the, I would say, kind of tip of the iceberg of some of what you go into in our facilitator training. And so right now, actually, the window to become a cultivate connection facilitator is open. And so cultivate connection is, of course, our long form parenting class teaching about parenting from trauma or adversity or loss. We cover everything from how trauma affects the brain to all the different connecting practices that we can believe bring healing and hope within families, especially those who have experienced adversity, trauma and loss. If you would like to become a cult vaccination facilitator, what that means is that you are being trained to teach the cultivate connection course in your community, where you are with other families who are wanting to begin walking this journey as well. And so it's being an advocate, it's being a kind of a community gatherer leader. It also is the ultimate accountability for yourself because you're learning at a much deeper depth what it means to parent after trauma to parent after adversity or loss. And it's just a very helpful look. Speaking from experience is a very helpful practice to be teaching the content. It holds you in greater check in your own home as well. So if you are wanting to look into that journey, you can check out the show notes. You can also head to empowered two connect.org and find all the information there. So for Becca, for Jesse, for everybody here at etc. For Kyle Wright, who edits and engineers all of our audio, and for Tad Jewett, the creator of the music behind the Impact podcast, I'm JD Wilson, and we'll see you next week on the empowered tech night. Podcast. Cast.

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