Charming. You absolutely have the right instincts for this kind of writing. Good stuff.
We cannot presume to second guess who people tell us they are, without the danger of laying our own bias and problems on them. In fact, it’s a principle of Psychology 101. Even the “wannabe” factor in people’s identities emerges from some of their deepest aspirations which, after all, is who they are as well.I agree that taking people at “face value” (perhaps not the most helpful term in this context), is the only reasonable working approach to human relations, even with its obvious risks. But the risk of misunderstandings and needless complications arising from imposing erroneous and self-authenticating judgments on others is, in my view, even greater.
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