I flew out to visit my daughter for her birthday. She lives on the opposite coast as I do. When I realized that one of my favorite bands was going to be playing at the multi state fair close to where she is, she suggested that we go to it while I’m here. The plans were made, we both were excited not only to be going to the concert but also to experience the fair that she hadn’t ever gone to in the three years she’s lived here. The day before the concert she tells me her boyfriend wants to go with us (he had previously told her how much he hated the fair). I said that was fine, no problem but was a little worried as to whether or not it would affect our experience because 1) he previously stated how much he didn’t like the fair and 2) not sure if he would like the concert. I did think it would be nice to have someone who knows the area and had been to the fair before (he was born and raised here) to help us navigate the area. I paid for everyone’s ticket and parking so my expectation was hey this was no cost to you so there’s nothing to complain about if you don’t like it.
As we are getting closer to the fair the traffic is all backed up and we are trying to find the correct gate to park in. My daughter starts saying, “Why did we come here? This is ridiculous. I don’t want to be here. I don’t know where to park, it’s so overwhelming”. She also is expressing her stress and unhappiness with sighing, etc. My daughter does have an anxiety disorder and often times gets very overwhelmed but I’ve never experienced her express it like this for something that she wanted to do. I also know that she is very uncomfortable in unfamiliar situations (never been to this fair before).
My thoughts went to great she doesn’t want to do this now because her boyfriend is with us. She wouldn’t be having this type of reaction if he wasn’t here. I also went to “She said she wanted to go but apparently she really doesn’t want to. I’m not important.” I was very hurt because she knew how much I love this band and how much it meant to me.
Here’s my model on this:
C: My daughter said “Why did we come here. This is ridiculous, I don’t want to be here. I don’t know where to park, it’s overwhelming.”
T: She doesn’t really want to go. I’m not important to her. She doesn’t care about me.
F: Sad, angry
A: Started telling stories in my head about how she doesn’t think I’m important, she doesn’t love me. Playing the victim.
R: I shut down and am on the verge of tears.
C: My daughter said “Why did we come here? This is ridiculous, I don’t want to be here. I don’t know where to park, it’s overwhelming.”
T: She’s anxious and feeling uncertain about where to go.
F: empathetic and understanding
A: try to help support her to find where we need to park
R: Realize how stressful it was for her and appreciate her for doing it.
I’m not sure I did the desired model right. I had a hard time coming up with the action and result answers on the desired model because I was trying to help her find where to park. Maybe I need to find a different feeling? The desired model doesn’t quite “feel” truthful to me…I think I ‘m missing something. Any feedback would be appreciated! Thanks so much.