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To what extent is our relationship built on honesty?

To what extent is our relationship built on honesty?

Honesty is one of the hardest things in the world. Telling the other person what we think, even if it's not what they want to hear. Do gentle lies or silence work? Can a relationship be real if we are afraid to say or hear honest thoughts?

Honesty is one of the most important components of relationships. It is important to be able to trust another. Because if we assume or are certain that someone is not honest, how can we rely on them for anything?

Photo: Unsplash/Oscar Keys

It's very difficult to be honest. On the one hand, we are often afraid to say things, because it may happen that when we say our opinion, it seems harsher than if it were only in our heads. It becomes an irreversible reality. This must have happened to you too, when there was so much silence after a half-spoken sentence that you could almost hear her put a period or an exclamation mark at the end.

On the other hand, we are afraid of offending others. It is linked to the irreversibility of the thought expressed. And of course with how important this other is to us. With what intention our sincerity is born. That what we communicate honestly is truly constructive and helpful or just the opposite. Because honesty can be malicious and evil.

The receiving party must also be open to honesty. This is its third component. Because if the person to whom we say this does not understand the intention to help, he can easily take it with a bad name, and consider it criticism, what we said to him only because we love him. Being offended can be part of honesty, meaning that as listeners, if we ask for it, we have to be prepared to hear something we may not want to hear. This is one of those games.

Compassionate lies

Photo: Unsplash/Alice Donovan Ross Photo: Unsplash/Alice Donovan Ross

Honesty can be mobilized. With cleverly chosen words or optimally designed circumstances. For example, our best friend's coat may not be ugly, but it may not suit her style or the color may not suit her. Our loved one's food cannot be bad, at most it can be unsalted, with interesting seasonings, or it can contain ingredients that we do not like. These are not lies, just attentive listening intended to help. But the question is: Is this necessary in a truly honest relationship, or if such means must be resorted to, to what extent is the relationship based on honesty?

Do not tell me

Of course, forced disclosure can happen at any time, even if we are not asked for our opinion. Keeping our opinions to ourselves can also be an effective way to avoid conflict. Many people often advise and apply the rule “don't tell numbers”. But for example, within the context of a (marital) relationship, is it good not to say that we cannot express our opinion about anything? Is this (marital) relationship valid then?

(Image: illustration)

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