Re: Gossip vs. venting
From: Kay Argyle (
Date: Mon, 30 Dec 2002 17:05:02 -0700 (MST)
> More often than not if
> you could talk to the person, there wouldn't have been a conflict in
> the first place. Expecting the upset person to talk to the person
> directly is rarely a good idea. "If they coulda, they woulda."

Thank you, Sharon, for clarifying the "yes but" feeling I've had.  When
something gets to the stage of being a "conflict," it's usually with someone
who has rebuffed my earlier efforts at problem solving.  When the community
tells me to deal directly with that person, it's like when I was a kid, and
adults told me to deal with bullying by myself -- it eroded my trust in
adults, because the result was that the bullying continued, now with adult
knowledge and (in effect) consent.

> *    I undertake to keep my relationships within the group clear by
> with my problematic issues directly with the persons concerned. [Cathy]

Phrasing it this way puts no responsibility on the "persons concerned."  The
reason this isn't already the obvious first line to follow is that people
have a lifetime's experience of it being at best a waste of time and
sometimes actively backfiring.

To be effective, there first must be an agreement, "When someone has a
problem with me or my actions, I will make a good faith effort to resolve
it."  With a good-faith agreement in place, you don't need a deal-directly
agreement -- it becomes the simplest way to deal with something.


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