No One Is Listening

Suzanne Burnett
2 min readJan 25, 2024


He just wouldn’t leave him alone.

The needless nit-picking wouldn’t stop!

In exasperation, I finally looked across the dinner table at my 11-year-old son and requested, “Will you PLEASE move to the empty seat at the other end of the table so we can have a moment of peace?”

Obediently, the young man picked up his plate and relocated. While settling into the new location, he commented with a grin, “You know, I could lecture people all day long…..but no body wants to listen.”

We all chuckled at the statement.

Then he brightened. “Hey, is there a profession where people pay you to lecture?”

“You could be a teacher,” one sister offered.

“Nah, the most effective teachers are those who lead discussions, not lecture,” another person countered.


Everyone turned back to their food. Brainstorming session was over.

In my head I thought, You could be a parent, but no one listens to them either.

But the nagging truth of the previous statement also rang true — -I know through experience that the most effective parental teaching moments happen through council and discussion, not through one-sided lecture.

So why am I so prone to this ineffective use of time?

Because I’m the PARENT, and I feel like I KNOW SOMETHING, and you’re going to HEAR IT, that’s why!

This is where I would insert a laughing emoji.

Tamara Runia recently taught, “Sometimes what we need is empathy more than advice, listening more than a lecture…”

Isn’t that the truth for all of us?

Runia also stated, “On rare occasions we may feel prompted to correct, but most often let’s tell our loved ones in spoken and unspoken ways the messages they long to hear: ‘Our family feels whole and complete because you are in it.’ ‘You will be loved for the rest of your life — -no matter what.’“

Holy moly, I have a long way to go in this area.

So today I am feeling grateful, once again, for the gift of repentance that the Savior has given us. Isn’t nice that life is divided into days? Each new day we can roll out of bed, onto our knees, and try again?



Suzanne Burnett

Mother of twelve children and member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints shares spiritual insights learned through parenting and marriage.