Saturday, March 31, 2007
Nothing hurts as much as being lied to. Nothing.
The damage that is done in the name of "protecting" ones we love from the truth is catastrophic. If the truth is eventually exposed, we are damned by our dishonesty. If the truth remains hidden, it eats at our souls and then poisons our relationships.
Perhaps you have known someone who was very emotionally fragile, and because they were fragile, no one would risk telling them things that would make them cry. Because everyone "had to" lie to them, they came to know that they had been lied to, and they could never tell whether others were being honest. They didn't like some, because they were cruel; Someone might tell them that they were annoying, or that their new idea was not new, or even that it was stupid. But then, see, when they were told they were right, or that their idea was good, it meant something.
So now I tell the truth, and sometimes it hurts, but I think it hurts less than lies do.
What is truth? Truth is a relative term, interestingly enough. There is what seems to be objective truth, ie "the earth exists." And there are subjective truths, ie "There goes a handsome man."
There are truths that a person has a right to keep secret if he or she desires, truths that must be told for the sake of justice or to protect people, truths that should be told, but carefully, and so on.
Truth itself is merciless. True things are what they are, and if people are hurt by them, so be it. That's the way it is with truth. Truh does not care about how you feel. Truth will not be diplomatic. Truth is cruel. So what we do with truth is very important, and it is up to us. And it can be costly, even when it is good.
Perhaps that is why we are said to be "brutally" honest or honest "to a fault" And why it is the "painful" truth or the "unvarnished" truth or the "cold hard" truth and why we must "face" the truth.
I use to be a hard core truth telling person, but there were times when people I love have been hurt by my righteous idea of truth. It hurt me to see these individuals hurt because of me telling the truth. I still will tell you the truth, or at least what I believe is the truth, but I do try to not be harsh or brutal if I expect what I say will be hurtful. I try to sooth it with love and concern and a show of willingness to help or be helpful. But I know, that however painful my “telling the truth” is to someone, it is better than being lied to.