The best place to open up should be at the dinner table with your family, right?

For many of us, we probably watched shows on TV in which the family sat down together at dinner and asked about each other's day. Moms would holler at kids as they ran out the door, "Don't be late for dinner!" Whether it was an old re-run of Leave it to Beaver or an episode of Boy Meets World, I grew up with the idea that dinner is meant for family.

However, that notion may be becoming something of the past.

A recent survey, conducted by Old El Paso, revealed that 1/3 of families do not talk at dinner. In fact, the parents who took part in the survey said that they literally just sit in silence while they eat. Although technology is a contributing factor to the quiet, these parents admitted that they didn't know what to talk to their kids about.

Ok, you don't have to give an Oprah-worthy interview to talk to your kids.

Just ask them a question and, here's the secret, listen to their answer. Most of the time, if you truly listen to what someone is saying, without panicking about what to ask next or how to react, you'll be better suited to keep the conversation going. And if there is some awkward silence then so be it, but show your kid that you're engaged in what they are saying.

My dad and I were just talking about how much kids just want to be heard by their parents. It doesn't matter if they ask the right questions or have the best advice, these kids just need mom and dad to be a sounding board. I don't think that ever goes away.

And hey, if you have to, make a list of things you're wondering about your kid each day. Or things that they've told you in the past that you can draw from. It may feel like your studying for a final exam, but eventually you won't need the cheat sheet.

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