You know the old adage ‘the truth will set you free’? Well it’s true. I said something true to someone today and a) they reacted quite well and b) we are suddenly more comfortable with each other. That’s kind of cool.
This is something that I’ve noticed in an ongoing way in my life. Many times I haven’t told people what I’m really thinking because I’m shy or I’m afraid that I will lose their friendship or I’m afraid that I will hurt their feelings or whatever and yet universally every single time I’ve told the actual truth to someone the reaction has been positive.
Funny because it’s the hardest thing in the world to do and you have to be willing to risk a friendship to do it or it’s really not what I’m getting at. I recall once that I told a friend that I felt he needed anger management or stress management counselling. Can you imagine how afraid I was to do that? I really really took a deep breath and danced around the subject and looked for euphemisms for ‘you’re really angry a lot of the time’ and still I came out and said it and he reacted so well. [holy crap, is that sentence as long as i think it was… this impossible to see it all at once thing is odd] In fact he thanked me for the advice. His doctor then fucked it all up but that’s his doctor and not on me.
There have been friends that I’ve basically dropped because I didn’t have the balls to tell them how they had hurt me or stunned me or were stifling me or whatever and to them I send out a gross and significantly overdue apology. If I knew where you were I’d send you a card. Anyway, what did that get me? It got me lost friends and hard feelings that could have been addressed. Funny thing is that if I had had the balls to tell them the truth I might still have a friend and maybe the friendship would have deepened. Scared girl too afraid of losing her friends to tell them the truth loses them anyway. Irony.
It’s really weird though, I have universally been terrified about telling people truth that I didn’t think they wanted to hear and nearly always they thanked me for it. You would think that such positive responses would encourage me in the telling of the difficult truths. Demonstrate to me how worthwhile it is and yet still I so often find myself shying away from things or candy coating them.
Some of this is, I’m sure, due to my subconscious realising who can and who can’t handle what I’m actually thinking but at the same time there’s more to it than that. When a friend started on a path that I was sure would find his marriage shattered at the end of it there wasn’t anything that I could say that would have stopped it or made it easier for them. So I simply cautioned them to take their time. I didn’t say ‘i see doom ahead on all sides… run in circles scream and shout!’ Was that the cowardly option? Would I have been better served or would they have been better served had I told them my unvarnished thoughts? The not so nice ones?
Human relations. What an endlessly fascinating topic. Seriously I think I should have been a socioanthropologist or something because I have strange and wonderful realisations about the average human. Of course my own behaviour fascinates me the most. It’s so strange and unexpected.
Funny too, everyone I know thinks that I’m so brave but I’m so afraid of the things that are important. Physical risks are easy. It’s the emotional ones that I have a hard time with. I’m so cautious about taking chances, so hesitant to leap into things that could actually wound me that I sometimes wonder what I’m missing out on. I wonder if that little piece of me that is always detached, always protecting me, always sober [seriously] is preventing me somehow from getting more deeply involved with things and people.
I don’t (by the way) think that that’s it, but it’s fun to wonder about things like this.
There was a moment at band practise tonight where my inner drummer came fully out and what I was playing and what I was hearing in my head matched up. sublime.
I had to wear a jacket today… and change into jeans for warmth instead of style. Fall is here ring the bell…
It’s time for this bird to sleep, have a good one kids!
[be advised i have no graphical user interface for the foreseeable future, if you have word verification in your comments I ain’t able to comment on your blog…]