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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Is a friend a friend if she or he doesn't tell you the truth?

This subject came up about a month or so ago while talking to a friend.
She said I was terrible for telling the honest truth.
I was hurt because I was taught that telling the truth was the most important thing no matter what it is about.
She argued that the truth can hurt people. I understand this perfectly. I just know that I would rather have someone tell "me" the truth. If I am doing something that isn't right, I would like you as my friend to set me straight. Snap me back into reality. Sure my feelings may be hurt, but for the good of everyone else around me I would like to know if I am offending someone or have wronged them.

Then I noticed a comment on facebook from another friend....

((Jennifer Tai said: "Surround yourself with people who love you". That sounds a little narc to me. I say surround yourself with people who tell you like it is......

Jennifer Tai said:.
Seriously, i think people who want to choose friends who make them feel good about themselves all the time are a little deluded. I can understand avoiding one or two a"#****!%" but to want to feel loved all the time? needy much? Sorry, ranting about blog posts I read and just want to throw.up.))

If a friend or family member loves you "they" will tell you like it is. As far as I am concerned you are not being a friend if I don't hear it from you first.

As I breathe deeply with the feeling that I am not alone on this thought process
.(Thank you Jen) .A sigh of relief....I don't want to lie, and I refuse to.
After the other friend had talked to me about it, I started to question myself...Thinking...Wow!...should I just not tell someone something if I feel they are in the wrong? ...Or should I lie and tell someone they look good in that dress that looks like its two sizes too small? Do I comment to a person that is being mean or cruel to someone else, or do I just step back and act as if its fine and not say anything?

My thought process is..When I tell somebody something a friend or family member
 I tell them because I want to help them and because I Love them.

I know that all of what I say is my honest Opinion.

I know you may or may not want to hear it. 

I guess that's what you get yourself into if you want to be my friend. 

I feel that this is part of who I am. If you don't like it, then you can choose to not be my friend.

 I certainly don't make decisions of who I am friends with based on this fact.

 Although its funny....In fact, when I think of who I am ultimately really good friends with as my closest friends. (besides family members... because family is family) I realize that all of them are the most opinionated bunch of women I know. Stubborn too :)....

We have had our falling outs but are better friends because we were honest with each other.

Thank you all who choose to put up with me :))

You are a good friend. 

Love You!

This whole post is my opinion and I would like to hear your opinions on the subject. Please comment below so I can hear your honest opinions. I would like to know if you would like your friend to tell you the truth or if you would rather not know?


Anonymous said...

I agree, sometimes hard to hear. In the longer run, it s the best plan.

Karen said...

Shakespeare said "To thine own self be true." And it is very good advice. People who are true to themselves will generally welcome opinions from others even if they are not what they want to hear. They will value truth where ever it comes from. I think the crux of the situation comes down to tact, and empathy. There are people out there who only want those around them to make them feel good and tell them things they want to hear which is definitely a failing.(King Lear anyone? Another Shakespeare) The other side of that argument is when someone is brutally honest to someone who is struggling with something and it really ends up hurting their feelings... what will make the difference in that situation is tact. Another issue with that is sometimes your truthful opinion may be... well wrong. And in that case you hurt someone needlessly.
Be honest, it truly is the best policy, but do it in a kind, loving way if needed. And it won't always need to be! Many times it will be ok to be snarky and fun, but there will definitely be times when a sensitive ear and a sensitive word will be needed to avoid hurting feelings... for someone who may be really doing the best they can and could get hurt by a casually made derogatory comment. (Being hurt doesn't excuse them if they harbor hurt feelings and get angry though!)
So my opinion summed up? Be honest but tactful.

Angela Bingham said...

When Christ taught the masses, he often performed miracles to give them food. He knew that people learned better if their basic needs are met. It's interesting that when He asked Peter after the resurrection if Peter loved him, Peter kept saying, "Yea, Lord, thou knowest I love thee." Christ then replied, "Feed my sheep."

Sometimes if you are barely making it, the truth, especially if is a truth that you struggle with, is hard to hear. I believe a true friend will serve you with a heart full of love and compassion. If there is a point you need to have pointed out, they will do it in the kindest, most serviceable way they know. The kindest way to tell me that my home is a mess is to pick up a broom and start sweeping!

To sum: love first. Follow that Spirit and all will be well.

eastsideartschool said...

Thank You Karen and Angela!
I love both of your comments.

Especially @Karen...the....Shakespeare said "To thine own self be true." And it is very good advice. People who are true to themselves will generally welcome opinions from others even if they are not what they want to hear.
and the sum up of "Honest but tactful." I like that a lot I will think about this from now on before I say anything :)

@Angela: "The kindest way to tell me that my home is a mess is to pick up a broom and start sweeping!"..The action not words is a wonderful idea! I will also think of this process..

Thank you for the comments!! I really like hearing what people think about my posts..I guess its just my nature of curiosity.

P.S. Miss both of you! wish you still lived nearer