Story 1: At the time, I was doing the Disney College Program in Orlando. At some point I was skyping with my friend Nala from Boston. She happened to catch a glimpse of my sizzling suitemate Tasteful and vice versa. I introduce them to each other, they start hitting it off. Within a few weeks, they are chatting regularly and even discussing the possibility of a visit.
Nala and I were discussing this sudden transcontinental romance, and she was telling me how great Tasteful is and how much fun he is to talk to and how she’s looking forward to meeting him in person and doing saucy things… I suddenly blurt out “You do know he’s having sex with a South African girl right now, right?” Nala was not a happy camper.
In retrospect, I probably could have been a bit more tactful. Nala didn’t really want to know what Tasteful was up to, and Tasteful didn’t really want me blabbing about the multiplicity of his affections. Whoops!
Story 2: Nala, Cupcake and I meet up with a herd of Brazilian musicians to jam and hang out in their practice studio. It was a fun evening full of loud music, booze, and general shenanigans. Cupcake gets far too drunk, starts feeling sick, and also starts getting oddly paranoid. Nala and I brought her out into the hallway, where she started crying and insisting that the Brazilian gents were making fun of her. Nala, in her best tending-to-drunk-friend voice, says “No, they weren’t making fun of you at all, right Cryptic?”. She was probably expecting a response along the lines of “Yeah, they’re just talking about music, why would they even want to make fun of you?”. Instead, I went with “How the fuck would I know? They’re speaking Portuguese.”
You might want to tone down the brutal in this brutally honest thing you’ve got going.
Start asking yourself questions like:
Did this person ask me for this information?
Do I need to tell this person this information?
Will this person being better off with this information?
Will this person be happier with this information?
Do I know this for a fact or am I just speculating?
Is there a way to convey this information that will cause less bad feelings?
The muscle you exercise is the one that grows stronger, including the ‘asshole’ muscle. Dressing it up as ‘too honest’ comes across as insincere to me. Not to mention the insult to everyone’s intelligence it is to play along like you don’t understand the nuance of subtext of your remarks. Mostly it’s an insult to your own intelligence. It looks like your ego, needing to make things that aren’t, all about you. As with all issues regarding your ego, there is really only one relationship; master/slave. Guess you’ll have to decide which you’d like to be.
“Honesty” is fessing up to things that might make you look bad, or show you in a negative light (i.e., what you did by posting your OP, oh the irony it doth burn). Being a dick by interfering where it isn’t your business is not most people’s definition of honesty.
The first one you could have been honest with tact, and probably should have…“You know, Tasteful is seeing other people, right?” To which she would have saved face and said “Oh, yeah, I know.” And you would have said “He’s a great guy, and a lot of fun, but he isn’t exactly ready to settle down with a white picket fence and a dog.” Translation: go ahead and use this guy for sex, that’s what he does. But this isn’t a “romance.”
The second time, similarly “I don’t know since I don’t speak Portugese, but you aren’t comfortable, lets go somewhere else.”
i.e. address the problem in a way that lets the person you care about know you give a damn.
In the case of story 1, it had gotten to the point in the conversation where I started to feel dishonest by not telling her what was going on. I really did feel that knowing the reality of the situation, however unpleasant it might have been at first, would be better for her in the long run. I just should have phrased it more carefully.
In the case of story 2, the fact just popped into my head and I spat it out without thinking. This wasn’t a case of good intentions vs. bad intentions, it was a case of thinking vs. not thinking. :smack: