Patricia and Dorothy kept a single
annual diary jointly. Each would make an entry as they wished, often
feelings they did not want to openly talk about. Significantly, they
used it to avoid face-to-face quarrels or confrontations. The aggrieved
partner would enter their complaint, and the other would reply in
writing, either justifying their actions or apologizing.
Patricia intended the 1934 Boots diary she gave Stanley to serve the
same function. He dutifully played his part at first, while she
evidently replied to his comments verbally. But as the months passed
and his gallstone pain became more intense, he seems to have lost
interest in the game and given up.