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"Mix-up at the Movies" (text-only version)

Scene 1 shows the wrong way to handle a conflict. Scene 2 shows a better way.

Scene 1 - The Wrong Way

Girl 1 is waiting in front of the movie theater, looking at her watch and tapping her foot.

Step 1

Girl 2 and Girl 3 arrive. Girl 1 explodes: “Where have you been?!?! I’ve been waiting here forever!”

Girl 2: “Sorry we’re late. We were at the mall and got stuck in the elevator….”

Step 2

Girl 1: “Yeah right. You’re so full of it! If you want to blow me off, then don’t ask me to meet you at the movies!”

Girl 2: “Wait…”

Girl 3: "You’re not listening…"

Step 3

Girl 1: “Oh, I hear you loud and clear. And I thought you were my friends. I’m out of here!” Girl 1 storms off. Girl 2 and 3 look at each other and shrug shoulders.

It's upsetting when people show up late. You may be mad. Let's see if there is a better way to handle this. See it again, step-by-step.

Scene 2 - The Better Way

Girl 1 is waiting in front of the movie theater, looking at her watch and tapping her foot.

Step 1

Girl 2 and Girl 3 arrive. Girl 1 counts backward in her head (in bubble: 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1) Then (still looking annoyed, arms folded, but not shouting) says, “Finally! What took you so long?”

Girl 2: “Sorry we’re late. We were at the mall and got stuck in the elevator!”

Girl 1 (arms folded, not looking other girls in eye, body position somewhat hostile): “Whatever … ”

Girl 2: “No really, we had to wait for mall security to get us out.”

Step 2

Girl 1 (opens arms, looks at girls): “Well, I’ve been waiting here forever.”

Girl 3: “Well, we were stuck …”

Girl 2: "Why are you being so uncool?”

Step 3

Girl 1: (totally relaxes, opens arms, makes eye contact) “I’m sorry. That must have been really scary. It’s just that I felt ditched when you didn’t show up and you didn’t call.”

Step 4

Girl 2: “I see where you’re coming from … we should have called you to let you know what was going on. We’re sorry, too.”

Girl 3: "Phones don’t work well in elevators."

Girl 1 (smiling, joking): “It’s all good. Just next time, take the stairs, okay?”

 

Content last reviewed September 22, 2009
Page last updated October 31, 2013

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health.

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