Parker loves receiving mail. When we lived in Seattle, he was always excited to receive letters and packages from relatives and friends. Upon moving home to Kentucky, the mail he received diminished considerably. Thanks to his good friend, Spencer, he still receives postcards and occasional gifts via mail, but for the most part, his snail-mail days are over.
To soften the blow, we often give him junk mail. He always asks if it's really for him (meaning is it addressed specifically to him). Why burst his bubble? We usually make a big deal out of giving him these treasured credit card offers and time-share opportunities. "Look what came just for you!"
It all seemed pretty harmless until recently. I casually flipped through the mail, quickly gathering our bills and magazines, and tossed Parker "his" letter. He tore into it and read it aloud, "Dear Parker, How are you?...."
The kids went down for their naps, and I began the daily task of restoring order to the chaos in our home. I happened upon his letter. Wait a minute...Yes, it was a credit card offer, but no, it wasn't addressed to us! Oh my gosh! We had just opened (and destroyed) someone else's mail!
My mind reeled. I had never done this before. I was too scared to even look up "mail fraud" on the Internet for fear that it would confirm we had committed a crime. Visions of the police at the door, me clutching the torn letter, Parker crying for his mail, swirled in my brain.
I considered trying to tape all the pieces together and putting back in the envelope with RTS on the front. No, the mailman would see right through it. In the end, I threw it away. I don't even remember the person's name anymore. I hope he or she would thank us for saving them from the credit card trap (it was an introduction rate, after all - they'd be paying 12.99% in no time). If they really wanted it, I suppose they would request another application.
Double lesson: Stop lying to Parker (even through omission) and pay attention!!!