Opinion > Star Staff
Reminders for the Journey: Write two letters
By Doug Smith
One of my beloved clients told me this week that she has learned to "write two letters," meaning that when she is ready to go off on someone, she first writes the letter unedited and says whatever she wants to say in whatever manner she wants to spit it out. Then, after having calmed down through venting, she writes a much more appropriate letter.
With the sexual mess going on these days with some of our top military and governmental leaders, I can now imagine that many wished they had never written any kind of letter, specifically emails, which are, along with text messaging and other types of social media, our modern way of writing letters.
Thus my reminder: Better be dang careful what you put in print! Furthermore, unless you are absolutely sure, you better be equally careful about what you say verbally, even in a two-person conversation, 'cause you might be recorded! I have had it happen to me at least once that I know of, as a client of mine secretly recorded a session with me that later got presented in court in a child custody case. I certainly felt violated.
Son, here's the deal: If the director of the CIA cannot conceal his emails, or that of his "friends," then no one can be confident that any communication is really going to be private! Furthermore, we humans, being the flawed communicators that we are, don't and won't ever get it all done correctly anyway. I find this within myself in writing my weekly column. Quite often, upon some reflection, or it being called to my attention by someone, I really shortchange a person or point of view with no intention of being offensive. In fact, I did so last week, when trying to use a cute analogy, I "dissed" dream interpretation, which even though I claim no expertise in being able to do, does have great value for many people. Just got stupid. Again.
I am somewhat amazed that text messaging has become such a part of my life, because prior to about three years ago, it just looked silly to me. However, since most people younger than I, which is just about everybody, use texting as an easy way to communicate, I have found it to be quite valuable. Regardless, at least once a month I will send a message to someone other than whom I thought I was sending it to. Just last week I accidentally sent a text intended for someone else to my good friend, Big Ron, and he responded back in his simplistic and sympathetic style: "Idiot."
Increasingly, people get caught in extramarital affairs through their compulsive usage of text messages as well as phone calls. So often, individuals involved in illicit relationships will tell their spouses that "we are just friends." Well, I have as many friends as anyone, but I don't send 64 text messages a day to them, day after day, which is what people in "charged" relationships typically do. And furthermore, cell phone records can be tracked if you have a few bucks to spend on someone finding out about the records, even if you are not the account holder.
Bottom line: If we just don't do stupid stuff we don't have anything to worry about. Nuff said.
Doug Smith is a licensed professional counselor. Reach him at 972-436-6227, email@example.com or visit his website at ccclewisville.com
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