A RELATIVE EXPERIENCE
There are family members who are your favorites. The both of you get along, just fine in spite of their short comings. I just love them, nevertheless. There is no push and pull, or tug of war in our communications. In whatever we do we mean well. You can just be yourself with that person and you sort of wish they lived nearby instead of miles away. But then there comes the time when that communication is misinterpreted, and assumptions are made. This is what happened. Out of flattery you present a photo of theirs placed on a product for their approval. It’s accepted and you appreciate it if they would purchase but it isn’t necessary. So the image is published on the print on demand site Redbubble. It’s not pushed on the cousin it’s just there for them whenever they decide to purchase, or it can be taken down. So it’s been published for over a year. The cousin liked the image as is and said she would purchase one day.
So many months later, out of the blue, the cousin suggests that she will purchase the picture on a number of the products her image was placed on. I said ok not really wanting to believe it but just to give her the space to make her decision whenever. After about a month of her suggestion I had an event, and I invited a number of relatives to participate and she was one of them. It was just an opportunity to talk amongst family and friends in a conference call. Most of us are shut in due to COVID-19 and we’ve missed a family reunion this year. She replied to the invitation, but she didn’t’ participate nor did she respond to the call I made to her afterwards. Now I’ve learned that this cousin, the best cousin ever is avoiding me, because she assumed that I asked her to purchase all the products with her image on and she’s stating she can’t afford. This is damaging to me amongst family members and we know how harsh families can be. It has been 24 hours and no response to my call to her. I am disheartened. This experience has reinforced the thought that I should have pondered her good intentions and likelihood of this leap of a conclusion. It was a rush to judgement. Should I have surmised for her that she could not afford the products? Was I to assume she would think that she had to purchase all the products? Maybe I should have walked her through the products listed and informed her of what she wanted and then had the conversation of what she wanted to purchase and whether she could afford it. The number of products that her picture is on did not mean that she was to purchase all of them. There maybe someone else out there in the cybersphere with an artistic eye may like her picture and want to purchase it for themselves. Because that is what we do on Redbubble, we put images on every product in hopes of someone liking it. Sadly, her assumptions and harmful discussion with others makes an ass out of her and me. Hence the saying “to assume makes an ass out of you and me” (ass-u-me) This experience inspires me to question our conversations more thoroughly going forward, and to make her image private. Done!