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Brutal honesty is not a virtue

Why does everyone seem to think that honesty MUST be brutal? Dears, it's not a requirement; nay, it's really only to be so in the most extreme of cases. The "nice, necessary, true" test doesn't include "nastiness for the sake of it." It's not something to be worn as a badge of honor; rather, it is something to be embarrassed by if it comes to the point of being absolutely necessary.


( 23 comments — Comment )
Jun. 29th, 2009 01:42 am (UTC)
Preaching to the choir here.
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 29th, 2009 01:53 am (UTC)
"Can't it be both?"

Jun. 29th, 2009 02:28 am (UTC)
It *can* be. It *shouldn't* be, but it *can* be.
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:35 am (UTC)
I was aiming for levity there...
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:47 am (UTC)
I know, I'm just sayin'...
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:27 am (UTC)
I love that people use that as a shield. "It's not MY fault you're mad - you just can't handle the truth!" Um, no, I can handle the truth just fine. Can you handle the truth that you're being a bitch?
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:25 am (UTC)
This. What you said.
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:27 am (UTC)
It dumbfounds me. Maybe it's because we have too much internet anonymity that people think they can get away with being that way.
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:45 am (UTC)
Probably true - the internet is simultaneously more anonymous and more intimate, so it's easy to be more heart-to-heart. And more boot-to-pants too, as you observe.
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:48 am (UTC)
Just running into it more and more lately.
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:51 am (UTC)
You need more popcorn.
Jun. 29th, 2009 02:52 am (UTC)
I've long felt that people who use the term "brutally honest" or "keeping it real" are using "honesty" as a cover for delighting in being mean. It's a kind of a power trip for them. They're allowed to be mean, and people can't fuss about it because they're just being "honest". There's such a thing as tact and diplomacy, and there are ways of making your point that don't make you look like a complete dickhead.
Jun. 29th, 2009 03:10 am (UTC)
Hence the "nice, necessary, true" test I thank bovil for teaching me.
Jun. 29th, 2009 11:49 pm (UTC)
I'll admit that I'm not really a stickler for the "nice" part if it's necessary and true.

I am a stickler for "necessary" and "true." If either of those don't apply, I'll keep my mouth shut.

"True" is easy-ish. "Necessary" is the complicated one. In some cases it may still be unethical to not say something, even if you know that it's not going to be helpful in the end. If it's not unethical to keep your mouth shut, and it won't improve the situation in the short or long term, it's probably not "necessary."
Jun. 30th, 2009 02:10 pm (UTC)
Agreed that some people's necessary is highly subjective, but that's where the nice part ought to come in.

Personally, I think people should share nice, true things more often, even if they're unnecessary. :)
Jun. 29th, 2009 03:53 am (UTC)
Honestly, I wish you'd either spill the gossip or go and bitch at the person you are really mad at! I hate you LJ teases!!! I want the ugly details! (grin) (just kidding, you know I don't actually have patience for things like details!)
Jun. 29th, 2009 03:59 am (UTC)
Seriously. Who once told me not to bother with names if I didn't see them more than once? :P

Alas, no gossip. Just some thoughts after some conversations I've had recently. If it were about someone in particular, when have I ever been one not to name names? :) (Not that this *hasn't* applied to drama in my past, mind you, just nothing au courant.)
Jun. 29th, 2009 04:26 am (UTC)
Love that icon. I srsly need to expand my collection of icons. If our scanner worked I could make many!
Jun. 29th, 2009 03:44 pm (UTC)
i love the topic. I always had problems with "brutally honest people" who can't take my honesty in return. I just realized how universal this thing is.
Jun. 29th, 2009 03:58 pm (UTC)
Oh, they're the best. It's ok if THEY rip you to shreds (all in the name of "honesty," of course), but if you call them out the same way you're obviously a mean, hateful, spiteful person.

Riiiiiiiiiiiiiight. Universal, indeed. :)
[no subject] - colinblackthorn - Jun. 29th, 2009 07:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 29th, 2009 11:58 pm (UTC)
Well, it's a lot better than "Stop stalking me, bitch!" or "You're creeping me out!"

I'm assuming I'm missing some context here. Without any context it just sounds like a blunt but relatively neutral dismissal with a pointless disclaimer leading off.

What's the right way to tell someone who is interested in you that you're not interested? For the sake of this question, let's assume that "I'm married/in a relationship" and other external reasons would be lies.
Jun. 30th, 2009 02:12 pm (UTC)
"I'm sorry" is probably nicer than "Don't take this the wrong way," but that's just me. Context, though, is important - either can be said a wide variety of ways, not all of them kind.
( 23 comments — Comment )

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