Obsessive Compulsive Last Word Disorder. (OCLWD)

I just read a fun post at Talk To Diana that has a serious element to it. Here are snippets:

“The last word on the last word…

Obsessive Compulsive Last Word Disorder. (OCLWD)

Maybe I should re-name my blog The Last Word?

Oh my gosh I really am sick! This affliction doesn’t just happen with texting and blogging!

I’m obsessed!

I have to answer every email I get too! I hear that ping on my blackberry that alerts me of new mail and I have to look!
Sometimes I try to hold back, but it’s like an addiction…my heart starts to beat a bit faster…

I feel droplets of sweat forming on my temples…

I just have to read the email and answer.

And facebook!

I have to answer every comment…
At the very least I have to like every comment…
I guess there’s one saving grace…
I’m not a huge fan of talking on the phone…
So y’all can have the last word there…

I seriously entertained the idea of closing my comments on this post so that I could have the last word…”

You can find her post here:


Here was my comment to her post:

“Great post! I know what you mean, Diana. To me it’s a matter of politeness. when someone communicates something to me, it feels polite to respond so they know I’m not ignorning them. But if they feel the same way, where does it end? I notice that usually what happens is each reply gets shorter and shorter until one person or the other feels it won’t be impolite to not reply. There should be a symbol or something that can be used that says something to the effect of “While it’s always good to communicate with you, I don’t need a repy after this message and I won’t view think you’re ignoring me if you don’t reply to this message.” Perhaps: “ARIN” (A Response/Reply Isn’t Needed/Necessary)
ARIN ;-D!”

So dear readers, what do you think? Should there be a symbol or acronym that politely says something to the effect that no response is necessary? Perhaps NRIN or ARIN?


About russtowne

I'm awed by the beauty of nature and the power of love and gratitude. Some of my favorite sensory experiences include waves crashing on rocky shores, waterways in ancient redwood and fern-filled forests, and rain. My wife and I have been married since 1979. We have 3 adult children and 5 grandchildren. I manage a wealth management firm that I founded in 2003. My Beloved is a Special Education teacher for Kindergartners and First Graders. I'm a published author of approximately 60 books in a variety of genres for grownups and children.
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39 Responses to Obsessive Compulsive Last Word Disorder. (OCLWD)

  1. Elyse says:

    How about this: “IDCWYT — I Don’t Care What You Think” ;). No answer needed!

  2. I also always answer my comments, it is polite, but dont have to have the last word though 😆

  3. dockfam says:

    We are all afflicted. We should start a support group! LWA – – Last Word Anonymous

    • russtowne says:

      LOL! I like your plan! I sometimes will just type “:-D!” or “;-D!” so the commenter will know I saw and acknowledged their last comment but was NOT trying to get in the last word.


  4. billgncs says:

    I am a husband with two daughters, I am resigned to no last word…. sigh….

    • russtowne says:

      Acceptance can be a good thing! ;-D!

      • billgncs says:

        when my oldest was about 16 we flew to Arizona to get a used car and drive it back. It was great fun. So we zipped to the Grand Canyon and then cut across the Navaho reservation to get back to the highway. It is beautiful in the desolation, and the poverty on those barren isolated spots. As we drove across those unmarked roads with no gas stations or towns in sight she chatted. At one point I just nodded or said, uh-huh, at the proper times and she talked nonstop for over two hours. Laughing, I still kid her about it.

        • russtowne says:

          ONLY TWO HOURS??? ;-D!

          Let’s just say that I can relate to what you went through on that trip! ;-D!


          • billgncs says:

            Dad, what do you think about _____, breath, well I think…

            • russtowne says:

              LOL!! Seriously, if your daughter speaks to you when she is 16 you are doing something very right. A lot of dads say that their daughters are either gving them the Silent Treatment at that age or are being hysterical for a substantial part of the month. While I got some of both I was very lucky to have a daughter who talked to me too. I found that being available when teenagers want to talk is a great way to get them to do so–even if it was often after midnight on a week night–sometimes way after midnight. Sometimes the conversations would last a long time, but looking back, those converstations were usually the best, most heartfelt and bonding conversations we ever had when they were in their teens.

              • billgncs says:

                some might say you are a lucky guy to have that relationship, but I suspect you earned it by being a good Dad

                • russtowne says:

                  Thank you. Likewise to you.

                  Still, there is also likely to have been some luck involved in my case. Every biological birth is a little like playing the ovarian lottery. You never know what your going to get. Every one of my three children came out quite differently from each other, but they all were good children, and are all now responsible adults. My wife and I will take credit for the parts we may have impacted, but we got lucky with what we got to work with. We also had the interesting element of adopting our daughter as an infant from another continent and culture.

                  • billgncs says:

                    maybe — but kids drink up authentic love. Anything can happen but a good base matters. Neat about your daughter.

                    • russtowne says:

                      Thank you. I agree about authentic love. And consistency. And even discipline. I say the latter because I was in a military Jr. ROTC class and was amazed at how many of my classmates appeared to absolutely crave the Marine Corps discipline and boundaries. It was clear that they were not getting anything like that at home and badly needed it. Perhaps they equated discipline with attention and love, and perhaps they weren’t getting enough of those critical things at home either. I felt sad for them, but happy that they were getting at least some of what they needed in that program.

                    • billgncs says:

                      yes, sad — self discipline is the key so success. That’s interesting about the military.

  5. True to my nature I have to comment. Thanks for posting these snippets and have yourself an awesome evening!

  6. I have the same problem with text messages I like to reply to let the sender know I got the text but sometimes it is like when is it right not to reply.

  7. artsifrtsy says:

    In our digital world we can’t get visual clues about the closing of a conversation – I try my best to reply – but have no need to have the last word. It’s a whole new world of etiquette.

    • russtowne says:

      Ettiquette was the word I was just thinking of too. It really hasn’t yet been well developed about certain aspects of digital comunications.

      In the case of blogging, my biggest challenge is trying to keep up with the huge flow of communications. I love the communications, AND sometimes it feels like a fire hose has been rammed down my throat and the water is rushing full-blast through it.

      • artsifrtsy says:

        I totally understand that. I so appreciate the feedback and want to express that – but how much is enough? too much? I guess we’re designing our own etiquette:)

        • russtowne says:

          Yes, and it won’t serve everyone equally well as we al have our own expectaions and time constraints, but I think most bloggers will do the best they can and most readers will be at least somewhat patient and understanding.

  8. Andrea Kelly says:

    Haha I love this idea! I always feel awkward and don’t know how many responses are appropriate to a response…
    Right now I’m having trouble even viewing/responding to any comments however, so I guess that kind of solves the problem for the moment? Silly wordpress!

    • russtowne says:

      Hi, Andrea. WordPress sure can get glitchy sometimes. For some reason I’m not receiving the posts of a sizable percentage of blogs that I’ve indicated I want to follow and which show I’m following. That is frustrating. I suspect that WordPress is just starting to get maxed out and they are in Whack-a-Mole mode trying to fight too many fires at the same time so are kind of spreading the pain around so everyone gets some but no one gets completely knocked off. Just my guess.

  9. mindfuldiary says:

    Good point. I also try to reply to all the comments (as I would respond in real life), but no need for last say. Sometimes smile is enough. If is very difficult to find balance with comments. Too much politeness ruins the authencity. I try to do what feels right. I for example always end up putting smiles in my comments to show the mood ( i do realise sometimes, it way too many smiles haha….some people are irritated by smiles, i’ve heard)., because things can easily be misunderstood in cyberspace.

    • russtowne says:

      “Sometimes smile is enough.” That’s true about a lot of things in life. I tend to do the same. Since I have a very dry sense of humor it is often misunderstand as not being intendd as humor, so I use/overuse the “:-D!” winky smiling thing to let people know that I’m saying it with a wink and a smile or with my tongue firmly in my cheek.

  10. mimijk says:

    I think those of us who obsess about being responsive, would end up with more than the acronym..it’s part politeness, part appreciation, and part desire to end a conversation on the right note? I have no idea how one can abbreviate appreciation – or even whether one should..

    • russtowne says:

      “I have no idea how one can abbreviate appreciation – or even whether one should.”

      I’ve thought about it some more and after reading several comments I’m leaning in the direction of you and Diane.

      I think “Thank you” will often suffice.

  11. No….I think it should be still up to the ‘human instinct’ in each of us to decide whether or not a reply or another reply should be done. I think saying ‘you don’t have to reply’ is kind of ‘curt…just my thoughts…Diane

    • russtowne says:

      I’ve thought about this quite a bit and I think you and Mimi have a point, Diane. Also, I’m not fond of more “rules” in my life. There are too many already!

  12. thoughtsfromanamericanwoman says:

    My first thought was to not comment but post a {LOL} and then thought, but then russ would want to respond, but then I thought I really liked this post and I should at least post a ha ha, then I read some of the comments and really enjoyed reading them, And of coarse I have to add, I never get the last word in at home because I have a husband who thinks his middle name is Always and last name is Right.. as in Tom Always Right! So I am proud to say I am not OCLWD but I am inflicted with the problem of liking to talk, in fact when Dances with wolves came out I was teased that my name is… Woman who talks too much. So not that I get the last word in, I have trouble allowing people to get a word in… LOL Thanks for the wonderful discussion tonight – you are better than tv!! Blessings – Patty

    • russtowne says:

      LOL! And HAHAHA. Better than TV? WOW! I will treat that as high praise indeed! ;-D!

      I enjoyed your funny (and revealing!) comment, Patty. Sorry it took so long to respond.


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