I have a dilemma

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I have a dilemma

Jul 29, 2020, 10:25 am

To my friends here,

I'm hoping that you will help me with a personal dilemma. It's kind of a long story, so please bear with me.

First, my father, who passed away 13 years ago, instilled in me a love of reading. If it wasn't for him, I probably wouldn't be an LT member nor would my shelves, both real and virtual, be overflowing with books to be read or re-read. I remember reading some of the classics with him and sitting down to discuss the stories. So, for me to say that I respected my father tremendously is no exaggeration. He didn't have a college education, but somehow he managed to get myself and my 3 sisters one.

My dad worked at the local TV station in Baltimore, behind the scenes, making sure that the picture you saw was clear, the sound was good and that there were no interruptions. Even when he was home, the TV was tuned to the station so that he could make sure that there were no problems. He was dedicated to doing a great job.

Here's my problem....

While my father worked at the station, an up and coming celebrity-to-be came to work on air. I found out later that this person treated my father poorly - disrespectful, rude, snobbish. When my father told me, I swore to myself that I would never acknowledge or get involved with anything that this person was connected to.

Now all these years later, my regular book club has chosen a book to read that was recommended by this celebrity. This was the main reason that the book was chosen. I told them that they were free to choose whatever book they wanted but if they were reading this book, I would have nothing to do with the monthly meeting. (normally, I am the one that reserves the table and time for the meeting, sends out the reminders - all the logistics) I explained my reasons for my inability to be involved and most of the members were okay with that, but some have commented that I was just being childish.

So here's my question....

Am I being childish or am I sticking to my principles and the vow that I made to myself in trying to honor a man who did everything he could for me and my family?

I'm really interested in hearing your opinion. I'm not sure that I worded the question well, but hope that you get the gist of my dilemma.

Jul 29, 2020, 10:31 am

I think that you are fine with your actions- you explained your reasons to the book club members and certainly one person from the club can take on the responsibility of organizing one meeting.
I think that honouring your father is the right thing to do.

Jul 29, 2020, 11:56 am

I agree with >2 torontoc:. If the other people can't accept your explanation then it's their problem. You haven't demanded that they don't read the book, just that you'll sit the group out for that one month. I really don't think it's you that's being childish.

Jul 29, 2020, 12:46 pm

I don't think you are being at all unreasonable. As >3 Jackie_K: says, you're not demanding that the group not read the book, you're just telling them you aren't going to participate. And you were considerate enough to give them advance notice so someone else could make the arrangements that you usually do.

Jul 29, 2020, 1:13 pm

Sounds reasonable to me. There is no reason to be involved in a discussion that's going to make you feel uncomfortable, angry or stressed. There's enough stress around these days; no need to add to it. And if your book club is anything like mine, the topic strays way off from the book, and it may include comments or discussion about this celebrity, so why be there to endure it?

The only "flip" side to this is that it's unfortunate that the book itself is dragged into this--it may very well be a fine book. But my guess is you may have 1 or 2 (!) other books on your shelves you'd rather be reading right now, rather than this one. And life is way too short to spend time being upset and aggravated over one book that might bring painful memories.

Jul 29, 2020, 5:06 pm

I agree with the others. It sounds to me as if you handled the situation in a mature manner - not childish at all!

I am wondering why these remarks stuck with you enough to prompt this thread. Is it because you truly aren't sure whether you are being childish or is it perhaps because you feel a bit hurt to get that reaction from people you felt were friends? If the latter, you may want to think a bit about how to clear the air with those people (or sadly, to redefine your relationship with them from 'friend' to 'acquaintance')...

Editado: Jul 29, 2020, 8:35 pm

Hi cyderry,
Just a few points.
1. Definitely don't go your book club. Stick to your values.
2. As someone already said -the book discussion will no doubt be short and the gossip on the celebrity long. Save your self the angst.
3.And if their end game is to complain and wear you down to attend so that they won't need to organise the meeting.Don't give in.

I hope all this makes sense.Your Dad sounded like he was a good man.Hold on to that.
ps I sometimes wonder if the books they are promoting {celebrities} if they have even read them. ???

Jul 29, 2020, 9:02 pm

I thank you all for your support.

I think this bothered me so much because I've been coordinating this book group for almost 10 years and we have always said that we will never force anyone to read any book, I just think their attitude centers on the fact that I refuse to still handle the logistics. I've gone on vacation in the past and actually had to handle the planning on the road. I guess they just aren't able to handle the fact that this time I'm not going to do it.

I also think that it worried me because I know that I can be extremely stubborn. I honestly feel that if I reversed my position, I wouldn't be able to look myself in the mirror. My Dad deserved this person's respect, it's too bad that now that they are RICH, it seems everyone thinks they are the greatest. I think this world has forgotten why we should respect someone, and it shouldn't be their bank account balance.

Jul 29, 2020, 9:12 pm

>8 cyderry: Sounds like it's time for "rotating" logistics people, perhaps between 2 or 3 of you?

Speaking of which, if you ever need help with the Roots set-up, statistics, etc., due to vacation, illness or bad hair day, I'm sure we can pull 3 or 4 of us together to help you out.

Editado: Jul 29, 2020, 9:43 pm

>9 kac522: Kathy, Darn, I missed out when we were in complete lockdown, I had a lot of bad hair days!

Editado: Jul 30, 2020, 2:04 am

>10 cyderry: I still haven't taken the plunge...I'm waiting another month, as long as I can stand all this hair around my neck.

Jul 30, 2020, 3:27 am

Stick to your guns Cheli and it sounds like it is time for someone else to learn the ropes to give you a break.

Jul 30, 2020, 7:06 am

I generally fall on the side of "go with your gut". It's unfortunate someone has lowered themselves to name calling which is what I think using the word "childish" is.

Jul 30, 2020, 11:50 am

>11 kac522: Fortunately, for me, my hairdresser and I have been friends for 40+ years so when things started to calm down, she made a house call. She gave me a haircut and my husband. He was most appreciative because he didn't want me near him with scissors! After months of "togetherness" I think he was afraid I'd kill him. LOL

Jul 30, 2020, 1:44 pm

I am with the others. I like you respect your father. Best to you.

Editado: Jul 30, 2020, 2:18 pm

>14 cyderry: too funny!

Jul 30, 2020, 4:06 pm

I thank you all for letting me know that I'm not really a childish old b**** and that my stance of sticking to my vow is not bad. I feel much better. Thank you.

I will be curious to see who takes on the planning or if it turns into a disaster. I think it would be petty to hope it doesn't run smoothly, right?

Jul 30, 2020, 4:46 pm

>17 cyderry: Petty but human! If they are able to pull it together without you (and really, they should be able to) it could turn out to be a good thing for the book club in the long run. It's never good for an organization or group to depend so heavily on one person to carry the administrative burden. Imagine — you might be able to miss a meeting in the future without having to do all the work ahead of time!

Jul 30, 2020, 5:33 pm

I'm a bit late but I fully agree with everyone else that standing by your decision is not childish at all.

Jul 31, 2020, 4:15 pm

>1 cyderry: not childish, not even stubborn ... I see it as principled. Think of how sick you'd feel if you participated, and how loving and honoring of your dad that you're feeling because you've taken a stand. Very disappointing to see that some club reactions are prompted by members' selfishness vs. respect for your experience.

P.S. >11 kac522:, >14 cyderry: -- husband and I also had backyard hair appointments! -- everyone wore masks, the stylist also wore a face shield and took our temps; after haircut she applied my color and left, I washed it out after the appropriate time.

Ago 1, 2020, 11:02 am

A bit late too, like Birgit. But I don't think you are childish at all. It's a promise to your self and you have to keep your promises. Nobody can force you to read a book you don't want to read. And your bookclub-friends have to respect your decision not to get involved with preparations. I think there should be 2 or 3 members to alternate in the preparation. We do that with our RL-members too.

Ago 1, 2020, 4:32 pm

I agree with the other caring people here. Nobody can tell you how to honor your own father's memory. That decision is yours and people should not pressure you about it. Good for you, for sticking to your decision.

Ago 2, 2020, 3:59 pm

I'm late in my opinion too but really Cheli, I think you do so much for people that they tend to take for granted. The book club should accept your need to sit out this one meeting with thanks and grace.