“Fred and Wilma are getting divorced. I heard that they hadn’t been getting along in years. He never was my favorite person. And I can’t imagine what it was like to live with her. I mean, you’d think they had everything, but neither was ever happy.”
The objective statement was only a pretense to get to the nitty gritty subjective accusations and assumptions about Fred and Wilma’s perceived character faults.
Even if we do not go beyond the facts, if we repeat someone’s news which was told to us in confidence then “Janet got engaged yesterday” indeed becomes gossip when we, who were trusted not to say anything, go ahead and do it anyway. The tip-off to this one is usually four little words: “Don’t tell anyone but.”
copyright Barb Harwood