Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A Comment About Letters and Comments

I have been writing this blog for about 9 months now. I have received some interesting letters. Many are concise and right to the point. Some are a bit rambling and I have to sift through and glean information in order to give a relevant answer. Others are so brief I have to be somewhat hypothetical in my stance and opinion.

I have promised to publish or answer all the letters written and up to this point I have kept that pledge. I have published them as written as I find this to be the most helpful and honest method in which to respond to these inquiries. However, if a letter contains vulgarity I retain the right not to publish it on my page and if it is rude or condescending I reserve the right not to answer or publish it.

The same goes for comments. I have received a few that are constructive in their criticism and I appreciate that. Some have recognized my unique approach to a topic and I humbly and graciously accept the recognition. Others have used the comments as a forum to be vile, obscene and insulting. Disparaging remarks have been made about everything from my writing style to my profile pic. Nothing constructive mind you, just rude and acidic. It is easy to make these comments from afar, assuming the person lacks the courage to make them face to face or with even a return address to be held responsible for what they said. I have no editing function with the comments, so I either publish them or I don't. If they are rude, vulgar or intentionally insulting I have to delete them in their entirety.

Some commenters appear to have difficulty knowing the difference between opinion and fact. When I state something as fact, it is generally backed by overall conventional wisdom or it is well documented by study. One of the intentions of this blog is to create controversy and stimulate dialogue via the comments section. This way people can respond with their opinion in hopefully a mutually respectful way. In doing so, it is helpful to appreciate when I am being subjective and relating my opinion to the overall advice and discourse of the writing.

For instance, a few have stated that I view relationships in a rigid and archaic way. On the contrary, I have stated several times on this blog that people can mutually define a relationship however they want to. So when I state an opinion as regards parameters in a relationship, this relates to my own personal beliefs as to how I behave and act in a relationship. It is not intended to be a dictate or written in stone. So the pretense that their should be fairness and justice in a relationship, that what is good for one is good for the other, is based on conventional wisdom. The declaration that one should not give out a phone number to an available member of the opposite sex because it would risk hurting their partner is opinion. I would invite an intelligent reader to know the difference and digest that comment in the context of the entire article and blog.

Other nasty comments and emails have revolved around the use of the title "doctor," in this blog when I lack that qualification. There is a disclaimer in this thread wherein I state "I am not a real doctor, but I do have a Master's Degree......" In the 80's and 90's there was a popular show on NPR called Ask Dr. Science, in which an almost identical disclaimer was used. If this method of disclosure was good enough for an entity as prestigious as National Public Radio, it is good enough for me.

This blog, for me serves several purposes. One is to create a quick reference for my psychotherapy clients as regards common treatment techniques for their review. Some articles are also dually published on one of my contract employer's website. Another purpose is to try to stimulate a dialogue as regards maintaining a healthy romantic relationship and a well-adjusted self. And I readily accept opinions about these issues that are submitted in a civil and mature manner. The truly obnoxious and belligerent reader can just move on (its the left click on your mouse).

1 comment:

garritygal said...

Your writing style has a calming effect and shows your educated experience. Don't let the haters get to you.

Never attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by stupidity.