Independence with an “e”.

This is a post for anyone who has a teenager or who has ever been one. It is a classic exchange between a father and daughter. The daughter was me at age 18; luckily my father had a good sense of humor.

This is an excerpt from a letter my father wrote to me when I was a college freshman.  He was responding to a  letter (now lost) in which I was I think that I demanded to be “free of their parental tyranny” and had invoked all the psychological knowledge I was able to summon at the time.

Dear Linda,            That letter you composed to us was a very good one.  If you applied yourself to your studies (I was on academic probation) as diligently, I’m sure you could do very well. By the way, “independence” is spelled with an “e”. As long as you want your independence so badly – maybe you had better learn to spell it.  

            Well, you’ve received our permission to spend most of your summer vacation in Boston. Just don’t forget the conditions………………

The letter went on with a gentle reminder of responsibility.

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