My mother sends me emails quite regularly. She clearly expects regular responses. I do my best to respond to the vast majority of her emails, pretty promptly.
And that’s okay, but the problem I have is one of content. Once I’ve answered any questions that she may have posed, I will start writing a little bit about what I’ve been doing lately. Which is generally a good thing, because it makes an email much more interesting to read.
But then I realise that one of the things that I’ve written could be misconstrued, as she does have very delicate feelings, and will take offence at the drop of a hat. So, to remove the risk of upsetting her, I will edit out the paragraph about the computer speakers that I’ve bought in the post-Christmas sales, because she may read it and think that I am implying that she failed as a mother by not buying me the computer speakers for Christmas.
And then I’ll edit out the paragraph about the nice Maglite torch that someone else bought for me for Christmas, as she may read it and think that I am implying that she has again failed me as a mother, for not buying me the torch herself.
And before you know it, I’ve edited my message down to the bare bones, facts and figures, no subjectivity, as if I were writing an email to a client at work. No risk. Because it wouldn’t be worth it.