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I made a choice to never take offense over misspelling, mispronunciations or even wrong names; all of which I experience regularly. Several years back, immediately after arriving to pick my daughter up from summer camp another 11 year old approached me. “Are you Annie’s mother?” she asked indignantly. “Yes, I am” I replied. “Annie has treated me rudely all week long!” she proclaimed. A brief investigation revealed that my daughter could not pronounce this young lady’s name. The girl’s mom told me that she has taught her daughter that it is okay to require others to say her name right and that to fail to do so is disrespect. My daughter felt totally whipped by the situation, she couldn’t get it right; she knew she would get accused of deliberate disrespect if she said it wrong. She did the only thing left to her – she avoided the other child. What a frivolous application for negative energy. These two girls could have enjoyed a week of fun and games together had there been grace or compromise applied. Instead, they warred. This other girl’s mother set her up to live a life at taking offense and creating chasms over a tiny thing instead of getting on with the important stuff – like how we are treating each other. When I get a note addressed to ‘Morine,’ I am grateful someone valued me enough to write me a note. When someone calls out “Hi Marlene, how are you?!,” I smile big and tell them how I am, and appreciate that they acknowledged me in a way that says – I like you. Offense is a choice, one I choose not to take and recommend others not take as well. It builds emotional barriers in places where goodness may grow if offenses were not applied. Extend grace, enjoy life more. Sincerely, M Morine, Marlene, Murine, Mureen, Murine, Marine, Marla, Moreen, Manager, Mom… or as used by my parents; Maureen)
Toggle Commented Sep 10, 2009 on When They Misspell Your Name at Business Writing