Here are three A’s for responding to a situation.
Address: meet the current situation head on and call immediacy. “What is this elephant doing here?” “I’m feeling really uncomfortable right now; are you feeling the same way?”
Appease: acquiesce to their needs (real or perceived) to avoid conflict, to please, to avoid expressing our own needs. “I don’t want to but I will do whatever they want because it is just easier.” “I don’t want to be here but I can’t possibly say that so I will stay.”
Avoid: lalalalalalalalala can’t hear can’t see don’t want to know… Or distract with (self-generated) drama, blame, learnt helplessness… “I’m too busy to deal with this.” “They won’t let me do anything.” “Nothing I do will change anything anyway.”
(Inspired by ongoing illuminating conversations with Tracey McGrath.)