We Aren’t Girls

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The other day I offered to compose an insurance-related letter for my husband.  He is an excellent wordsmith and usually enjoys writing but had suffered through a ton of email correspondence already that day, concerning repairs being made to his mother’s condo in another state.  I was familiar with the situation and told him that I could write the basic letter, he could go in and make modifications or change the wording if he wanted.  It turned out to be a good collaboration.  It made me think about the time when people had not a personal assistant but a secretary, who often handled a company’s correspondence — and owners or managers would sign it and pass it off as their own. I thought those days were long gone — yet recently a business owner who is my age told me that his “girl” would get some papers that I requested. I assumed his daughter worked there but it turned out that his “girl” was the office manager — and no, she wasn’t his girlfriend. It felt offensive, regressing to a 1950’s mentality when women were treated so much less professionally. I like letter writing — maybe someday I’ll start a venture, composing letters.  I think I’d enjoy it — as long as no one refers to me as their “girl”.

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