Friday, January 18, 2013

Please, just tell me the truth.

A simple yet a rare reality
For whatever reason most people seem to prefer to avoid the facts.
Usually this is driven by a desire to soften or defer any confrontation.
But sadly, without direct communication things only get worse.

Sometimes you just have to tell the truth. It's so much better than subterfuge.

Confrontation isn't such a bad thing. In fact you can handle it quite elegantly. One of my favorite examples of that art is this scene from Guess Who's Coming To Dinner?

Why can't life be like the movies?
Or even better yet, an episode of The Golden Girls?
Conflict, candor, resolution.
All in thirty minutes with several commercial breaks.

Thankfully I am surrounded by people who truly love me. And that means they often have to "tell it like it is". A few months ago I dined with one of my most cherished friends, "D". Before we finished our first glass of Cabernet... she started in on me.

"You need to find balance in your life."
"You've lost your soul."
"You're fat."
"You've become a horrible 
  partner, father, friend."
"Quit your job before it kills you."
"You have everything you want 
  but is it enough?"
"It's not worth killing yourself is it?"

And... everything 
she said was totally correct.

That evening was a wake up call. "D" laid out the facts in a caring, compassionate, yet candid manner. Hearing her say the things I felt deep in my heart caused me to make important changes.
she saved my life.

Over the years, my closest friend "T" has told me many things that frankly were initially quite shocking.  But... upon reflection... always right. 

Love often requires
taking a chance.
Ultimately I've found that only those closest to me have been willing to tell me things I did not want to hear.

At one point in our relationship,
Frank had to challenge me about 
something extremely personal 
and therefore highly volatile.  
My reaction was - 
"If you force me to choose, 
 it will probably not be you." 
His response?

"I love you so much that I'm willing to take that risk."