Friday, August 9, 2013

Honesty is the Hardest Policy

People tell you that "honesty is the best policy".  I've always thought those people were full of shit.

Not that I'm a big ol' liar or a cheater, but typically those people saying that are the people who seem least interested in the truth.  They're the types that will ask you how you're doing but never really want more than a "Fine. And you?"  And you know that you're hoping they're fine too.

But lately, I've been thinking.  Why do I really hate that saying?  Sometimes honesty is NOT the best policy.  Guys, if your girl asks you if those pants make her butt look fat, are you really going to say "Absolutely"?  Because if you do, you run a very good chance of not getting those pants (or any other pants) off of her any time soon, and it ain't because they're too tight.  If you don't say those pants are terrible, and she already knows they are, you're screwed too.  (I feel for you, guys.  I really do.  We're a tricky damn bunch.)

So maybe it's not that honesty is the BEST policy.  Maybe it's that honesty -- real honesty -- is the HARDEST policy.  It's as hard to hear that someone feels lousy as it probably is for him to say it.  It's a delicate tightrope to help your girl figure out how those pants increase or decrease her ass size.  It's hard to say "yes" when you really want to say "no".  It's hard to just let your truth out.

Because when you are honest, there's a good chance you're going to hurt someone's feelings.  Honesty can be sharp and abrasive, messy and confusing.  But I've found when I'm not open and forthright, I still feel terrible.  My lies, however small and unassuming, tend to weigh a thousand pounds on my shoulders.  Yet I'm a good Southern girl, and good Southern girls don't make a fuss.  They don't impose upon others.  They make others feel comfortable and at ease.  They are polite and placating.

I'm not a boat rocker by nature anyway, so all the good Southern training and people-pleasing and no-fuss attitude just tends to clump together in a big pile of fibs and falsehoods.  Therefore, I always will tell you "I'm fine" or "I don't need any help" or "It's okay" because I just don't want to hurt your feelings or cause you worry.  I might say that "I don't feel good" because I just don't want to go with you.  I'll stay late or serve on a committee that I hate because I don't want to put it upon others.  And I'll stew and seethe silently instead of just telling you to "Stop it.  That hurts me."

But I'm sort of tired of being polite.  It's all fine and good to be that sweet Southern girl, but it's a short walk from being a good hostess to being a doormat.  So while honesty may be the hardest policy for me, I'm trying really hard to practice it when it's appropriate.  You've been warned.

I won't tell you that your ass looks fat though; that's a lose-lose conversation.

But you might have some spinach in your teeth.

No comments:

Post a Comment