Rowyn (rowyn) wrote,
Rowyn
rowyn

Honesty

I'm actually current on my LJ friends list again. I just read the most recent entry (verminiusrex announced his newborn (and premature) son will be coming home from the hospital today. Hurrah!)

So I'm writing an entry now, and thinking about the year end. It's been a good year for me. I figure I'll do haikujaguar's accomplishment meme again, and an update of how my 2004 New Year's resolutions went. And some resolutions for 2005, because the 2004 ones went well enough that it'll be nice to do them again.

But right now, I'm thinking about something gen wrote: "people are at their most honest when they're angry."

No, I don't think they are. An angry person will say things that they wonldn't say under other circumstances. And some people will say things that they have been thinking about for years but never said before. There's a kind of truth that emerges from people when they're angry, just as there's a kind of truth that comes out in depression and grief and fear and other unpleasant emotions.

But I don't know that it's a greater or deeper honesty. Perhaps for certain people it is. But angry people will lie, just like scared and depressed people will lie. Just as a polite person might lie so he doesn't hurt your feelings, an angry one may will lie so that he does. Or say things that he really and truly deeply believes, for the ten seconds or so that it takes to say them. And then realize: what was I thinking?

There's an inclination to think it's more true. To think that when I am in the throes of depression, my observations about my life are clearer and more insightful, unfettered by the instinctive desire to pretty things up, to make it more palatable. To think this hurts so much, it must be true. Lying to make people happy or to avoid difficulties or to smooth over problems, that we can believe. That's just politeness gone wrong. But surely no one would lie to create ill will, no one would lie to breed hatred, no one would lie to generate misery.

But we do, you know. We do all the time.

lady_anne once wrote something to the effect of 'you can tell someone a hundred nice things that you think of them, and they will all be blotted out by the memory of of one careless insult uttered when you were upset.' That's true, too.

But that doesn't make it right.
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