There are instances where you can choose whether to listen or not. Like when a friend tries to tell you about the wonderful things about her boyfriend. You can always snap at her and tell her to “talk to the hand”.
But I just think that there are circumstances where you have no choice but to listen, not that you are forced to but because you simply value what the other person has to say.
When I become a mother, I’ll make sure that I’ll be the first one to know of my child’s thoughts, ideas, imaginations, dreams, and whatnot. I’ll make sure that I have time to sit down, just to listen, to know her through her thoughts and stories. We will talk with each other not just because we have something to talk about but because we simply cherish each conversation together. Coz I know, a mother will always try to give her offspring what she didn’t have as a child.