I love advice columns. Love them to pieces. Who wouldn’t want to have a peek into the tiny windows of other people’s lives? Sign me up. I love the melodramatic complexity of it all, how the advice columnist always seems to have an angry tone in his/her reply, how crazy some people really and truly are.
This morning, one woman wrote in to complain that her significant other has been SELLING her anti-anxiety medication to his friend. She looked through his text messages and found out what he was doing. What does she choose to focus on in her letter? The fact that she doesn’t like the guy being sold the drugs. Not the fact that her significant other is a thief. Or the fact that he’s getting financial profit off her medication. Or the fact that he’s dipping into her supply. (Hello? Anti-Anxiety drugs? Meaning that if the pills run out, she’s, well, Pro-Anxiety. Total public breakdown, a la B. Spears!) No, her irritation came from learning that her drugs were being sold to someone she loathes. The response from the columnist was cool, though. A little angry in tone, as to be expected, but also very bold in telling this woman that she needed to take a hard look at the obvious problems: 1) The Relationship; 2) Making Silly Excuses; 3) See #1. It was interesting. I wonder how much of the advice she put into action.
I also imagine what I would tell these people if they wrote to me. It’s safe to say that my responses would have the theme of absolute brevity. Certain things can’t be communicated any other way.
- My husband is cheating! What do I do? That’s adultery. Divorce him/her.
- I’m not happy. Time to end the relationship.
- I just like the way it makes me feel. You’re a drug addict.
- My boyfriend is selling my anti-anxiety medication to his best friend. Um, he SOLD your medication. Priorities. End it and move away.
- How do I explain to my mother that I have an invisible friend? You need counseling.
Work wouldn’t be boring, that’s for sure.