Thursday, September 29, 2005

A Question

I think that dishonesty and outright lying are different, yet the same - two levels of the same act I suppose. I classify it the same way my mother used to teach me that sin was classified: There is the sin (or lie) of omission, and the sin (or lie) of commission.

I guess the lie of omission is probably less heavy on the liar's conscience, easier to get away with or make excuses for. But as far as I'm concerned they have the same affect - they each destroy trust in a relationship, ANY relationship, be it romantic, friendly, or business.

So what am I rambling about? Well, I have a question. I am currently involved in a situation where a friendship of sorts (more of a close-ish aquaintanceship really) has become a business relationship. Before the business situation came up, I never had a problem trusting this person, because they were never dishonest with me. However, I heard all along many stories in which others said that this person had been dishonest with them, and was, quite frankly, warned about being her friend. She and I lost touch for a good while, then "met" again, in a business situation, which I entered into with caution, but not really with any mistrust - and was met with many many repeated warnings about doing so.

Since I entered into this business relationship, I have had the opportunity to question my decision, on several occasions. You know how it is when someone promises you something, but doesn't come through, and you hear the excuses and reasons, but never get what was promised. Of course, there's no way for me to verify the validity of the claims, and so I've had little choice but to accept, and wait. But eventually, I got impatient and more assertive, but the more forceful I became, the more resistance I encountered - the passive aggressive behaviors such as unanswered emails, which as far as I'm concerned, when in a business situation, there is simply no excuse for.

So, in an effort to get what I was owed, I bent over backwards to overcome all of the obstacles for this person. Every hurdle they presented, I jumped for them, and was met with yet more excuses. When I came to the point of having become an unavoidable nuisance who could no longer be ignored, I got - take a guess - yup, more excuses. Only now, the excuse given leaves me in a position of being unable to argue or question without taking the chance of being an absolute ogre. The problem being, I think the excuse is an outright lie - bold-faced and really horrible.

You see, there have been enough lies of omission and questionable excuses, that I can no longer trust this person's word, even though the latest reason that this person has not lived up to her end of a business agreement is highly emotional, and evocative. If it's true I am genuinely sympathetic and completely understand the lack of action on her part, unfortunately, I don't believe her. Plus my lack of faith lends me, even further, to have less respect because of the suspicion that she would possibly stoop to the level of this lie. I mean seriously, if it's a lie, it's damn low - if it's the truth, and I question her, then I'm damn low.

So what do I do? I've been waiting for 4 months for this situation to be rectified, but is this the point at which I bite the bullet for my own sake, or throw a hissy?


  1. I would make one last attempt. Send an email to the effect that while you understand what's going on with her on a personal level, you need a resolution of whatever it is within the next week. Reiterate how long you've been waiting and let her know that you've had enough.

    Then, you might have to bite the bullet.

    That's what I would recommend.

  2. Erin, I can relate to this situation all too well: be it personal or professional. One way to circumvent all the emotion is to just consider the whole issue a "dead soldier," and move along. The more connections you make, the more honesty and "fair-handedness" you seek, the more you'll be disappointed, BUT it increases your chances of meeting someone of integrity who'll not, as my Dad used to say, "make an ass out of their mouth." Easy to suggest, tough to do, bearing in mind our emails from earlier this year. If you know what I'm saying. Either way, hugs and ~ML

  3. Sounds like a classic case of the boy who cried wolf to me. Whether it's a true issue, or a fabricated one, you can't trust this person anymore. And if this person is the person I think it is, I'd tell you that she is most likely crying wolf.

    Perhaps the advice to just call it quits and move on is the best. Probably not an easy situation, considering the fact that it's a business relationship you're going to have to sever, and in doing so, you're giving up an endeavour that you hold close to your heart. But sometimes that's the only remedy available, unless there's some sort of legal contract binding her to perform a certain duty. In that case, you have some recourse.

    Either way, I'm sorry you're stuck in such a situation.

    And on a totally unrelated note, or maybe it is related, if this person is the person I think it is, then this person has close ties to another certain person that you've recently had an unfriendly encounter with. Or at least she did back when I experienced her.

  4. lmao I love this code. Yes Ang, that's precisely of whom I speak, and yes there was a third party with whom I've parted ways with that is now in the middle of the same type of relationship I am with this person. The third party is also, ironically enough, one of the people who warned me not to get into said business relationship in the first place, then did so herself.

    I agree whole heartedly that this is a fictional excuse, and nothing more than 'crying wolf' and part of me agrees that I should walk away, even though it IS something I care deeply about NOT walking away from.

    Unfortunately, there IS a contractual obligation on both our parts. I tried to fulfill mine, but her procrastination made it all but impossible. If I walk away now, then I take the risk of HER taking whatever legal recourse exists by saying I didn't do as I am obligated.

    So I'm damned if I do, damned if I don't. I'm in a position both lrgally and "politically" that I can't say or do a damn thing except wait to get "officially" screwed.

    I have 2 choices, wait 6 months for the contract period to end, then sue, which I won't be able to afford to do or
    raise hell now and look like a royal asshole to whomever she chooses to twist this story to, because there will absolutely be people who believe her story, and trust me, I'll look like an ass, even though I'm in the right.

    Both options potentially cause negative ramifications on a professional level.

    If nothing else, this has given me one excellent idea for a new tattoo

    "FUCK ME" on my forehead perhaps?

  5. Yeah, I'm back...

    What bothers me on top of it all is that I NEED THIS MONEY! I've got 5 kids, another due soon - I need so much baby stuff it's ridiculous, Christmas is coming FAST, and I'm getting screwed.

    No it isn't a huge amount of cash but shit.

  6. Heh, that's a tattoo I've worn for a long time.

    I think that keeping a record of your attempts to perform your contractual obligations would be beneficial. My law professor used to tell us "Reality is what the record reflects." What a true statement.

    You've saved copies of e-mails, and I'm sure that there are phone bills and other means of tracking your attempts. And there IS a legal defense of "impossibility" in the world of contracts. If you were unable to perform your contractual obligations due to some sort of breach on her part then she breached first and you are free and clear.

    So says judge Angie, the law-school drop-out. Hey, I didn't drop out because I was no good at it, only because I hated lawyers!

    And if there's a third party experiencing similar problems with this person, then you have an ally in your defense, should you ever need it.

    I highly doubt that this will ever reach any sort of court, but I do think I'd cover my own ass, were I in your position, and I'd make sure that I had a record of every attempt that you've made to perform your duty.

    Either way, it sucks. Cut your losses and move on.

  7. Ummm... hello!? Baby central calling. I don't have much in the way of equipment, but I've got clothes out the wazoo. Hopefully it's a boy. Otherwise girls can look pretty in blue, too. :)

    Seriously, if you're interested in a care package, you've got it.

    And the rest of the kids? What kind of stuff do they like? I'm sure Steven can part with some of his stuff. Lord knows he's got too much as is. What size is Bren wearing? Steven's six, but he's small for his age.

    Email me, ok?

  8. Oh my ass is definitely covered, a full folder full of email conversations, all of which I've been as legally careful as possible in.

    I like having your drop-out knowledge around, I feel better already, because I DID try to fulfill the obligation and was basically told that it wasn't important, or, at least as important as other things, and that I'd have to wait... I'm still waiting.

    Unfortunately it isn't as much the money as the emotional stuff, and to be honest, maybe a little pride, that I'm having trouble with. I mean, if I were getting screwed out of the pay for a week's waitress work, it'd be considerably more money, but MUCH easier to walk away from.

  9. Ang, I'll definitely take the baby stuff if it's a boy, the rest are pretty well set, unless Steven has an extra Xbox 360 laying around...LOL!

    Seriously, the rest have more clothes than I have dresser drawers, and it isn't like Xmas is on the line over this, but you're an absolute doll for offering!

    (I'm still hoping it's a girl, I don't BELIEVE it is, but I can hope, right?! lol)

  10. I was absolutely positive with Jonas that I was having a girl. Just KNEW it. I had so many damn ultrasounds that there was now way they could keep the secret from me. I knew before the technician asked if I wanted to know.

    At first I was sort of disappointed, then driving home, I saw a group of girls, about ten years old, get off the school bus. They were dressed like little tramps. I stopped right there and thanked god for my little boy. At least this way I only have to worry about one dick in town. :)

    Don't know if I could handly a prissy little girl. I never was one.

    Sorry, no xbox 360. Got one of every other machine, though. :)

  11. You got mail. Unfortunately, it reiterates some of what Angie said without having the legal background. I only took Business Law...great minds think alike, though.

    I can't get into the baby clothes thing. What I should do is pick up my hook and make you a nice yellow afghan. But, I haven't crocheted in awhile.

  12. I'd rather ya's went and kicked her ass for me?

    legal disclaimer:
    the above statement is made in jest, off-hand as a joke and the speaker actually intends no physical harm to the aforementioned party

    Seriously guys, just the conversation and the use (do you feel used!?) of your minds as sounding boards and idea makers is more than enough



  13. maybe you should show her this post? it lays out your dilemma clearly.

    if ou bent over backwards to try to aleviate this, then you are not an ogre to confront her and make her deal with it.

    Good luck, either way...

  14. Thanks Garnet,

    I considered that a few hours ago, but I'm not sure, in my presently highly-pissed-off state, that I trust any decision I make so I've been advised (by a wise woman) to take a deep breath, lol, and that's all I feel able to do right now. When I calm down, I'll most likely do just that.

  15. You say that she made your fulfilment of your obligations impossible because it wasn't important (enough) to worry about. So walk away, let her try to sue if she wants.

  16. Idon't know that she would or wouldn't try to sue. *shrugs* Like I said, it's more my emotional attachment to the project, and the apparent need to walk away and cut my losses, that upsets me - not the money. The money is really a pretty small amount... I'm just sad about how miserably this whole thing has gone when I've put my everything into it, and had high hopes for it, you know?