Monthly Archives: August 2012

Dear John ……..AN OPEN LETTER TO THE CHAIRMAN OF A MAJOR BANK

Dear John,

That is how I believe letters of this kind normally start. We have been in this relationship for over 40 years but things can’t go on like this anymore.

Normally people say “It’s not you, it’s me.” But I can’t. It is you who have ruined things.

I understand why you feel hard done-by. First criticised for lending too much and then criticised for not lending enough to get the economy back on its legs. So I understand why you don’t like talking.

Nor do I criticise you for the fact that you pay so little interest, all my money which you look after, is worth less every single day it is in your possession.

It is the small things which have added up to this day.

It is standing in line next to a poster telling me you care, when there is only one person actually dealing with us, which actually shows how little you care. It is the lack of pens or the number of broken pens still tied to the desk, a sign of how little trust there is between us. It is the fact that when we talk on the phone, you always want to “review my account” when what you mean, but seem too ashamed to say, is that you want to sell me something. When we do speak, it’s as if you are reading from a script and I’ve long since stopped believing you mean what you say.

Recently when my card stopped working, you made me call you for a security check. You told me I didn’t live in my current address, despite the fact that I’m sitting in it now. I know you get easily confused, so I was even willing to forgive this momentary madness. But what got my goat was that you told me I had failed the security check. When of course it was YOU that failed.  I am the same person living in the same house as I always lived in. It is just that you have stopped believing in me and blame me for when things go wrong not taking your share of the blame.

I know that people say you ruined the economy. That you are a fat cat who takes what you want and cares for no one else. I don’t know if that’s true and anyway even fat cats can be  loveable. What I mind is that bizarrely this has become a relationship which I care more about than you. It has become one-sided and dysfunctional.

I am sure that when I leave, you won’t even notice I’ve gone. That’s what hurts the most.

I need to tell you that I have been seeing someone else. They have a bit of a bizarre obsession with dogs but I can forgive that because they are already taking more care and interest in me than you do, despite all our history.

I wish I could make this a clean break but am sure I will keep your number just in case we can rebuild bridges in the future, but I do it more in memory than in hope.

As for the future, I hope that you get to know yourself better, understand the meaning of the relationships you have built over decades and come to know who and what is of true value to you. You need to understand that those relationships are the only things you can bank on in the long-term.

Yours

Adam Shaw

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