Ask Amy: Readers respond to recent letters

January 7, 2014 

Dear Amy: It was extremely troubling to me to read about the attitude of the "young and ambitious" attorney who trashed her secretary on Facebook.

I am the managing partner of a small law firm. I am pleased that this attorney does not work for (or with) me. Prior to being with my firm, I was a consultant with several large firms and the CEO of a small corporation.

Law firms are collaborative endeavors with success dependent on everyone's efforts. It appears that this young attorney sees herself as a shining star, owing any success to no one but herself.

She may find herself on her own sooner than she anticipated, as I can't imagine any firm wanting to retain or hire a person with such a toxic attitude. She will then be her own support staff and will find out just how much her former firm's support staff assisted her in her success.

Everyone in an organization plays an important role in that organization's success and they are deserving of their dignity. Those who would rob anyone of their dignity deserve to be shown the door.

— Alan in Walnut Creek

Dear Alan: This attorney's arrogance and humiliation of her support staff on Facebook appalled some of her family members — and many readers.

Thank you for an eloquent explanation of just how vital cooperation is in any successful venture.

Dear Amy: I felt the need to respond to the letter from "Frustrated," who stated that her son was "gender queer" and was concerned about his attire at a restaurant. While your advice to the mother was sound, I felt your advice to the son — that he "grow up and quit sulking" — was insulting and ignorant. I am the aunt of someone who identifies as gender queer.

My "nibling," the gender-neutral term for nephew or niece, is neither male nor female, but both. My nibling sports a beard and a spectacular wardrobe of dresses. The decision to express himself/herself openly, despite the reactions and repercussions, was an act of real bravery. As a family, we have all stood behind my nibling.

— Proud aunt

Dear Aunt: Your "nibling" is fortunate to have your support. But I stand behind my basic advice to a 24-year-old who seems to have embroiled his mother in his choices of what to wear: Grow up. Stand up. Wear what you want and prepare yourself for the impact on others. Be respectful of people and situations. In short, I'm describing the sort of bravery you say your family member demonstrates.


You can contact Amy Dickinson via email at, follow her on Twitter @askingamy or "like" her on Facebook.

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