I agree completely

What I learned during an emotionally charged, frustrating phone call with the headmistress of my son’s (soon to be former) school:

  • I am more in control when I don’t respond to anything implied, but only to what is explicitly said.
  • Keeping it short works, as does not giving into the temptation to justify or explain.

    I hear you are considering leaving the school.

    Yes.

    ….

  • It’s possible to stop someone short by saying “I agree completely” and nothing else.

    This move will be extremely disruptive to your son.

    I agree completely

    ….

  • Ranting about a laundry list of minor complaints adds nothing.
  • I don’t have to reply to questions. “I’m not going to answer that” is an answer.
  • There is no point rehashing old arguments; it is frustrating and counterproductive.
  • When I’m more gracious and less horrid, I win.

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