Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Truth

“An honest man is always a child.”—Socrates

“Truth is such a rare thing, it is delightful to tell it.”—Emily Dickinson

Having recently been lied to, I’ve been working back over my history, to clean out any lies. Tonight, I went and told someone I’d lied to him and what the truth was.

If someone is in love with me, but I lie to that person about who I am, allow him to think something about me because I don’t fill in the blanks, he’s in love with a lie or a half-truth (one of the more devious forms of lies).

So, I told an ex-boyfriend tonight something I’d kept from him, so he’d know who he was with when he was with me.

There are some who say—even fine books that advise—not to tell, for instance, an unsuspecting spouse about affairs. I’ve always felt that sometimes my urge to tell the truth is to relieve myself of guilt rather than to do the right thing, so I really have to check my motives when I am honest. Am I purging because I want to be relieved of my guilt? Before I tell the truth, I need to think about my motives behind the confession for a little while.

There have been times in my life where I just open my mouths without thinking—I feel out the truth by saying whatever's in my mind out loud. But is what I am saying out loud a lasting truth, a real honest thing, one that will honor a relationship? If I tell someone, for example, “I never loved you,” is that something that could be backed up in a court of law? or is it me having a spell of doubt about my feelings for my partner, and wondering if I became involved on false pretenses. If I weather the storm, will it, like most of my thoughts, pass as a passing fancy?

If, when I told my partner I was grocery shopping, I was at the coffee shop enjoy the flirtations of a man who’d invited me to have coffee with him, and my partner continues to love me for who I am, does he even know who I am? Am I giving him a fair shake at living in reality?

I’m not going to live in secret any more from those who I've agreed a certain level of intimacy. And I’m going to do my best not to be a secret in someone else’s relationship, help fuel a bed of lies that acts like an intimate relationship.

Sometimes, when a child opens his or her mouth, he might say things that seem almost unkind. As adults, we hopefully have more facility with language and can maneuver the way we formulate our sentences, so that the truth can be a gift, not a dagger. If I tell you what I did that you didn’t know about me before, it is because I want to give you a chance to live in reality just a little more today, or to give you back your intuition. (What partner doesn’t, in some way, have a sense of when his or her loved one is being untrue?)

Living in fantasy or delusion is exhausting. The truth sets everyone free.

No comments:

Post a Comment