Every Wednesday: I never fail to be disgusted with advice columns. I am unsure why they still get paid to do what they do. As always, I am in awe when it comes to awful examples like Dear Prudence and Dear Annie. The columnists seem to get rewarded for giving you bad advice. I think that people get terrible advice from them. I don’t blame anyone that calls advice column responses garbage. I use my postings to correct these responses and help society by being an utmost asshole, (as always, a hat tip to Aaron Clarey at Asshole Consulting).
Consider this Care and Feeding article (courtesy of Slate) from July 26, 2022:
My daughter “Sue” was married to “Dan” for 6 years before divorcing 1.5 years ago. Sue had been complaining to us about Dan increasingly in the months before the divorce, and perhaps naïvely, we believed her. She said Dan was lazy, inattentive, and spent most nights out drinking with friends. As a result, my husband and I treated him quite coldly and haven’t spoken to him since the divorce occurred. Recently, we’ve learned from a trustworthy source (and confirmed with others) that the reason for Sue and Dan’s divorce was actually Sue’s years-long affair with another man—the very man she “started dating” 4 months after the divorce. We are shocked and disgusted by Sue’s behavior, and given this information are now seriously doubting many of the things she told us about Dan (who is by all accounts except Sue’s a great guy). We both feel awful about how we treated Dan. We made many passive-aggressive and even outright rude comments to him. Looking back, I’m amazed that Dan had the self-control not to blurt out the truth to us! I want to apologize to him, perhaps by sending a letter (we know where he lives in the same town as us). My husband thinks it won’t accomplish anything other than reopening old wounds for Dan. I obviously don’t want to cause him any more pain, so I came here for advice. Should we apologize to Dan for how we treated him, or leave him be?
I often pondered if I should seek out someone I felt that I had wronged in my life. The person that I committed an offense against was someone that ended up being a great person in my life. I had always felt bad, until a friend mentioned that I should ask myself a few questions first.
- Why am I apologizing now?
The friend had asked what purpose did my apology have at this time in history. He had mentioned that time may have healed the wound or at least the distance let me move on.
- Why am I apologizing?
Is the apology for me or for the other person? The man I committed my foul against lived a proper life and was a decent person. I don’t think it would have benefitted him at all. My friend said that I should forgive myself now that I try to live a better life.
- Can I handle when things don’t go the way I expect?
When I apologize, will the person be mad? What if they don’t have a clue about what I am talking about? The person(s) we are apologizing to happen to be human beings, with their own mental processes and emotions.
I would tell you that it is a novel idea that you want to apologize, but I want for you to ask yourselves the above questions first. If the potential receiver of the apology can possibly benefit from it, I would reach out for an opportunity to speak with them. I wish you all luck in these trying times.
I don’t imagine that I will have a shortage of emails to answer. I would love to start doing this for anyone that sends me an email. If this is you; email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you hate advice columns; I don’t blame you. If it isn’t soft people giving advice; it is someone trying to justify acting like an insensitive asshole. Till next week.