Trying to reason with children

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Linda…. Listen,

A few months ago, my sister, “Amy,” and her husband bought a new home telephone with all the features, including speaker, where everyone in the room can hear and contribute to the conversation.
Anytime someone calls, they automatically hit the speaker button. I learned the hard way one day when I was discussing something very private with Amy and heard her husband say something in the background.
I find speaker phones extremely rude. Amy will do dishes, help with kids homework or even walk away to another room while we’re talking and I feel she doesn’t give me her undivided attention. I’ve tried making subtle remarks such as, “I’m sorry, but I can’t hear you,” but that hasn’t worked.
Other members in our family feel the way I do and call much less because they don’t want a group discussion. I miss the private and personal conversations I used to share with Amy . Linda, how can I resolve this?
Sincerely,
Sick of Speaker Phones in Opelika

Dear Sick of Speaker Phones,
I couldn’t agree more with you regarding the use of speaker phones. I could understand if this was a business conference call or both parties were already aware that the speaker part would be used prior to the conversation. I do have a some suggestions for you. The first is to stop dropping “subtle remarks” and tell your sister exactly what you have told me – including how the rest of the entire family feels about what she’s doing.
If that doesn’t work, give her a taste of her own medicine by starting your next conversation with, “Amy, remember when …” and discuss her most embarrassing moment – something only a sister would know. Hopefully she will get the point and exercise privacy with all of her future conversations!
Good Luck!
Linda

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