If this e-news was forwarded to you and you want to subscribe, click here.

Upcoming Events

In Irvine: Compassionate Communication every Thursday 7-9pm. Newcomers and drop-ins welcome. A short topic each week, then we practice Compassionate Communications on real life situations. Led by Terry LePage at the Center for Living Peace. Register at the door; $15. For more information call 949-400-3379 or email Terry.
3/7 Making CC a Daily Practice
3/14 Requests that Work
3/21 Going the Distance: Answering the Jackal
3/28 All About Empathy
4/4 Compassionate Communication and your Brain

In Aliso Viejo: "Compassionate Connecting" led by James Prieto. Tuesdays in March, 7 -9pm. RSVP requested.

In Santa Monica: Nonviolent Communication Practice Groups with Gail McManus: Monday and Wednesday evenings 7:15-9pm. Newcomers welcome. Please contact Gail at 518- 653-2957,

In Long Beach:Learn & Practice NVC Series:
Thursday March 7, 21, 28, 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm. Free! Facilitator: Bellonda Bixby 714.319.4779 -or-

In Irvine: Compassionate Parenting Tools Wednesdays 10am-12pm. Learn ways to handle strong emotions, foster connection and cooperation, and parent without punishing, shaming, or bribing. Drop-ins welcome. Led by certified parent educators Terry LePage, Tova Pusl and Monika Larsen at the Center for Living Peace.. Download the flyer here. For more information call 949-400-3379 or email Terry. Check out the FAQ and the class schedule too. $25 per class; sliding fee scale available upon request. Quality child care included. You may bring young children into the classroom as needed. Ongoing during the school year; 3/28 is vacation.

In Pasadena: A 3-WEEK NONVIOLENT COMMUNICATION WORKSHOP with Gail McManus. March 23, April 13 and May 4, 9:30am - 12:30pm at the Anthroposophical Society, 110 Martin Alley in Pasadena. Cost: $75 ($25 per session). Negotiable in light of financial difficulty. RSVP or call 518 653-2957.

Parenting Classes around Southern California including weeknights, and Saturdays, in Spanish and English, are available from Echo Parenting and Education.

In San Clemente: "Cultivating the Peace Within Us"- the Basic Alternatives to Violence Project Workshop, Sat. March 16 and Sun. March 17. Treat yourself to this workshop purely for personal growth, or make it your first step toward facilitating AVP workshops in the community, schools, and prisons. Contact Susan at or rosalia at to register. See for info about the program.

In Oxnard: Free NVC Conference Weekend April 13-14 with numerous presenters in Spanish and English. Pre-registration required; space is limited. See schedule here.

Workshops and Groups in Santa Monica and Santa Barbara with Rodger Sorrow and Anne Walton: see for current offerings.

Compassionate Communication and Parenting Tips

Communication Tip: Translating Faux Feelings
Recognizing and expressing feelings is an important part of Compassionate Communication; doing so helps us connect with ourselves and others. Yet many words we commonly treat as feelings are not feelings at all. They are words of judgment and blame that usually cause more disconnection. A genuine feeling is always hiding somewhere under that faux feeling. Saying, "When you work late I feel abandoned" labels your partner "the abandoner." "When you work late I feel lonely" states your feeling, free of blame.

Here is a list of faux feelings. Any word that implies someone is doing something to you is not a genuine feeling. Here's an example of how to translate. "I feel intimidated." When you think someone is intimidating you, what emotion or bodily sensation do you feel? Anxious? Angry? It's worth sorting out the true feelings from the false, because the false ones don't bring us toward the peace and understanding we want.

Parenting Tip: Seeing Good Intentions
A key principle of Compassionate Parenting is that everything your child does is for a good reason: to try to express a feeling or to meet a basic human need. We just don't like the strategy they're using. Do you believe it?

"She's manipulating me." She is discovering how to use power, and what she learns depends upon your response. "He's lying." He is figuring out who knows what and who cares who knows. "She's lazy." She feels disconnected from the task you want her to do. "He acts out when he gets home from school." Maybe he has bottled up feelings after a long day of unmet needs, and he is venting them in a safe place.

When I see the good reasons behind my child's actions, I don't have to make him bad or wrong. Rather, I can coach him to to express his feelings and meet his needs in ways that work for the people around him.

Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?
Abraham Lincoln

Other resources: The International Center for Nonviolent Communication (CNVC) lists NVC practitioners, trainers, trainings, and resources. NVC Academy has a wide variety of NVC telecourses and audio & video recordings of past courses. NVC World has links to NVC resources of all types.

Terry LePage, M.Div, Ph.D.
Open Door Communication

Mission of Open Door Communication
To share Compassionate Communication and related life-serving tools with people from all walks of life in Southern California by:
1. Offering workshops, mediation, and coaching,
2. Establishing practice groups and mentoring resource people to multiply impact, and
3. Facilitating supportive relationships among practitioners.

Click here to subscribe to Open Door E-News.
To unsubscribe from Open Door E-News, click here.