This I Believe

Seymour, Arthur G., Mrs.
1954-01-15

This div will be replaced by the JW Player.

Mrs. Arthur Seymour describes her belief in the power of offering friendship to lonely women, and her attempts to do so.

Subjects
Female friendship
Interpersonal relations
Social Networks
Altruism
Loneliness
Cleveland (Ohio)
United States
Federation of Women's Clubs of Greater Cleveland
Permanent URL
http://hdl.handle.net/10427/76128
ID: tufts:MS025.006.016.00004.00001
To Cite: DCA Citation Guide
Usage: Detailed Rights
view transcript only

And now, This I Believe. The living philosophies of thoughtful men and women presented in the hope they may strengthen your beliefs so that your life may be richer, fuller, happier. Here is Edward R. Murrow
This I Believe. Mrs. Arthur G. Seymour is secretary to the Federation of Women’s Clubs of greater Cleveland, an organization which works for educational, civic, and welfare projects. Her early training was for teaching but marriage and a family claimed her time until her two daughters were old enough to start their own home. Now she is a proud grandmother and an active member of her community. This is Mrs. Seymour’s creed.
As one of a big family in a home where there was always something doing I found it hard to understand why some people would write to newspapers for advice, why some listened to soap operas or consulted people like Dorothy Dix. At our house we threshed things out. Sometimes it is true the sessions were stormy but you were set straight or else. When I commented on this one day to a popular radio announcer, Mrs. Clayton D. Lee, she suggested that I look over some of her fan mail. I was amazed at the appeals for council and help that she so carefully considered and so graciously answered. I asked her how it was possible to have the patience and to give the time for such a task.
She answered, “I really want to help them. Some day you too will realize how many lonely souls there are in the world.” Now I know how right she was.
Here at my desk I so often meet women who crave sympathetic understanding. They apparently hope that from my experience and living I may be able to help them. They have some problem or situation that baffles them; some precious memories they are anxious to share; want to air some fears or doubts; or perhaps gain reassurance of their own abilities to accomplish some special objective. I feel very humble that they bring their confidences to me. I can do so little, just listen and try to express my impersonal opinion in the kindest way.
An outsider gets such a different angle and in all fairness I understand my visitors’ need to talk over the many facets of their worries. Some of them hide behind a mask, trying to cover their real feelings. Others are cross and hurt over fancied neglect. One thing they all seek; a friendly, personal interest in their affairs.
On three different occasions we have moved to new locations. Each time in the new place I was very lonely. Each time I was most fortunate in meeting wonderful friends who smoothed that period of adjustment for me. I shall always be grateful and shall try to help others to bridge any gap that they imagine cuts them off from congenial associates.
Doing this helps me a lot, pointing the way I must go in search for broader understanding and tolerance. I like to watch folks as they hurry along focusing all efforts on some knotty question. I smile to myself and hope that they are sure of some kindred soul to share it with them. If I might endow them with only one blessing it would be the quiet assurance that they would always be among good friends.
There the beliefs of Mrs. Arthur G. Seymour, she is active in Cleveland, Ohio women’s club work.