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Communication From Different Perspectives

 October, 2013

Quote of the month

 "The destiny of every human 

being is decided 

by what goes 

on inside his 

skull when confronted 

by what goes 

on outside 

his skull." 


by Eric Berne, psychiatrist, author


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Masters Degree - Applied Psychology from Seton Hall University


Post-Masters Degree-Marriage and Family Therapy from Seton Hall University


Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist


Private Practice 

since 2008


NJ work experience totaling 5 years


Married 24 years


Mother of 2 young adult daughters 


Lived in Indiana, 

New Jersey and Texas


Passionate about 

what I do




When we communicate with people in our lives, we can be talking from a variety of perspectives; sometimes that perspective is correct and sometimes it's not.  If you want your relationship with someone to improve, you might just have to change the perspective from which you are speaking to them.  Read below to understand more about communication perspectives and what you can do to change them to enrich your life and your relationships with others.


As always, please pass along this information to anyone you feel may benefit from its content. 



Maryellen Dabal, MA, LMFT

Southlake Counseling & Neurofeedback Center

420 North Carroll Ave Suite 140

Southlake, TX 76092


[email protected]


Missed previous newsletters??

Go to www.dabalmft.com.  Click on the newsletters link at the bottom of the home page. Enjoy.....


From The Positive Perspective.......


Transactional Analysis is a psychological theory developed by Eric Berne which states that when we communicate with someone, we are talking from one of three ego states or what I like to call, "perspectives", The Parent, The Adult or The Child.  There is a time and place for all the ego states to be acceptable.  Be sure you are using the right one when speaking to the various individuals in your life.


When we are speaking to someone from The Parent Ego State, we are letting the other person know that we have power over them in some way and we are the dominant person in the conversation.  We are the one who gives direction and decides what course of action should be taken moving forward.  Acceptable situations for this ego state include speaking to your young child, being a teacher in the classroom, showing a friend a new skill that you have already mastered or even addressing an employee who we manage.  When we begin to speak to our spouse from this ego state, however, we are not treating the other person as an equal and this can cause stress and strain on the relationship. 


When we are speaking to someone from The Adult Ego State, we are letting the other person know that we both hold equal power in the outcome of the situation and this leads to a collaborative dialogue.  Both individuals have a say in what happens next.  Acceptable situations for this ego state include speaking to your spouse regarding how to discipline little Johnny who has disobeyed house rules, speaking to a friend who you are planning to vacation with and discussing with your neighbor who has what responsibility regarding the annual holiday party for the block.  When we speak to our toddler or teenage children from this Adult Ego State, however, we let them know that they are equal to us and that we are not the head of the household.  This can put undue stress on a child when they think they have to help come up with a solution that is beyond their years and scope of knowledge to solve.


When we are speaking to someone from The Child Ego State, we are letting the other person know that they hold all the power in the conversation and that you are not responsible for any outcome but that you will simply take their direction.  Acceptable situations for this ego state include a child speaking with their parent about when homework and chores will be done after school or when an adult is taking direction in an educational setting from someone who is familiar with the subject. When one adult spouse begins to speak to their other adult spouse from this ego state, however, they create an environment whereby all the power is given to one spouse and the other spouse has no responsibility whatsoever for what happens next.  This unbalanced power occurs in abusive situations every day and is a very dangerous place to be in.


There is so much more that can be shared regarding this topic and I invite you to analyze which ego states you speak from in differing areas of your life.  If you are experiencing relationship challenges, give me a call and let's get you speaking from the right perspective for the situation.  If you find success in your relationships, by all means celebrate!!!


As always, thank you for looking at the topic of Ego States ...........From The Positive Perspective.


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I welcome feedback regarding the newsletter or questions about my practice.  I can be reached at [email protected].  I cannot, however, give advice through email. For more information on my practice please visit my website: www.dabalmft.com

I wish you well...