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Thread: Can you tell the truth without hurting a person's feelings?

  1. #1
    MasterMind Member
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    Can you tell the truth without hurting a person's feelings?

    I posted this on my blog:

    http://marianna68.wordpress.com/2008...sons-feelings/

    Wanted some insight because it seems like there is a fine line between "constructive criticism" and what people might think is nagging. I try not to do the latter. However, there are those out there with self-esteem issues who feel like every time someone tries to point out a fault (and mind you not doing this in malicious sort of way) the giver of bad tidings, (usually me) gets their head bitten off.

    Have any of you experienced this? If so please share.


    "Be in love with your memories because they make you who you are today..."

    My blog: marianna68.wordpress.com

  2. #2
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    Endure Whisper's Avatar
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    You can, rarely. Most people take it sensitively when you are saying the truth.. which is why so many people lie!

  3. #3
    I [Under the Mask] am Riv's Avatar
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    truth is bitter and sweet. bitter when its against one and sweet when its for one. truth will hurt and make ur day, depends what IS the truth.

  4. #4
    Elite Member
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    I rather tell the truth and hurt someone's feelings than making up a lie.

    Everything is understandable.


    Obliterate Mankind

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    Senior Member
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    Andre Gide:
    Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it.

    Arthur Conan Doyle:
    Whenever you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

  6. #6
    Captain ~cK~'s Avatar
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    lieing is just making it worse to face the truth later..the truth hurts but its a fact and should be taken and understood


    That's not flying, I am just falling with style

  7. #7
    Strawberry Charm's Avatar
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    I agree with Endure, that is so true! I guess it also depends on the person you are talking to, sometimes truth really hurts and you have to be polite when you speak to people especially those who are older than you.
    Charm
    "I can expect to pass through life but once. If, therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow-being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again."

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    I have this friend who has an issue with drinking and don't know how to approach it but I think he needs to realize he dosen't have to have drink when he gets home for work. Plus, he will carry this cocktail around somtimes and to me it is like a baby with a bottle. How can a person tell the truth that I think he depends on alcohol without it blowing up in my face?


    "Be in love with your memories because they make you who you are today..."

    My blog: marianna68.wordpress.com

  9. #9
    Finding grace under pressure Pygmalion's Avatar
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    Mariana…
    I wish if I had the courage to tell others that their antisocial behavior are bothering me and I also wish if I had the spirit to always take from others as a constructive criticism,
    I usually avoid people with antisocial behavior or try to live with it if I can do nothing, if it was too bothering to live with, I would say it as a joke….
    My father tells people things he doesn’t like about them upfront…when I was young I thought he was a cause of embarrassment to me in some occasions, now I wish if I could do what he does.

  10. #10
    Mission Accomplished! Thalia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phat
    I rather tell the truth and hurt someone's feelings than making up a lie.

    Everything is understandable.
    Me too.

    I couldn't live if I had to feed someone a lie.. or let them believe something that wasn't true.. and had to keep that up.

    I'm a little blunt sometimes.. but my policy is: Honesty always. No matter how much it hurts.

    I'd rather know the truth, ugly as it may be, than be fed a lie. And I think most people would prefer that to, deep down inside.

    You know you're dancing when tears of pain and happiness blend in with your sweat.




  11. #11
    MasterMind Member
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    I think if you let the lie go on it will be harder to confront it later. I wonder where one draws the line between being tactful and telling a white lie? Why are people afraid to hurt an other person's feelings, especially those close to them? Is it their personal preference, culture, etc?


    "Be in love with your memories because they make you who you are today..."

    My blog: marianna68.wordpress.com

  12. #12
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    Some people construct this world of BS around them to rationalize their own bad behavior or to scapegoat blame for their own shortcomings.

    And it is emotionally painful for them to admit that maybe they are not perfect after all.

    Unfortunately, we live in a world that rewards people for keeping up appearances. So they may aggressively defend their image. They don't like the message, so they shoot the messenger.

    I think that is why people are reluctant to get involved. They don't want to be abused for just trying to help.
    Calling someone a name isn't name calling. - Sting

  13. #13
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    I think you nailed it J4T


    "Be in love with your memories because they make you who you are today..."

    My blog: marianna68.wordpress.com

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    i has a madol! minerva's Avatar
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    i think you can tell the truth to people without hurting their feelings, or at least minimising the hurt by using TACT. there is a way and a way of expressing oneself to friends.

  15. #15
    Honorable Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by marianna View Post
    I have this friend who has an issue with drinking and don't know how to approach it but I think he needs to realize he dosen't have to have drink when he gets home for work. Plus, he will carry this cocktail around somtimes and to me it is like a baby with a bottle. How can a person tell the truth that I think he depends on alcohol without it blowing up in my face?
    Alcoholism can be pretty obvious, which it is in this case. He probably knows he has a problem.

    Just be sincere and nonjudgemental, which you are anyways. Tell him he has a problem and he should go to an AA meeting. Perhaps the best you can do is find one in your city and offer to go with him just to get him started.

    But going from alcoholic to sober is a complete life change for most and usually involves confronting painful emotions. And he will have to do that on his own.
    Calling someone a name isn't name calling. - Sting

  16. #16
    i has a madol! minerva's Avatar
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    how about 'i really like you when you don't drink so much'....

  17. #17
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    The story of my life.

    This has always been my struggle and why so many people on this forum hate me. I'm just brutally honest and blunt that they end up being hurt or disturbed by what I say, it happens alot in real life as well but I don't really care..I have people in my life who understand where I come from and know how to deal with this and they're who really matter to me cause they know that I'm not saying things to hurt them and I'm just being honest.

    I think that people need to get over their insecurities and accept criticism and most importantly appreciate people's honesty, flattery and sugar coating the truth rarely gets anyone anywhere.
    Follow my thoughts and work:


  18. #18
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    I think constructive criticism is good when done without a nagging note. I think people get turned off by nagging..perhaps some kind of innate human trait. Sometimes being blunt is the only way, depends on the situation but yes, I think when you are confronting someone who drinks too much is best to just say: "Hey man, I think you are great when you aren't drinking." Personally, I find constant drinking a weakness and I find people who allow themselves to wallow in this kind of artificial self-pity weak minded. I suppose to keep this friendship I will just have to be woman enough to tell this person that if drinking is something he finds useful to relieve his issues then my friendship is not needed.

    In regards to sugar coating the truth. I hate that. Just tell me like it is. I prefer it.


    "Be in love with your memories because they make you who you are today..."

    My blog: marianna68.wordpress.com

  19. #19
    Senior Member
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    even if it hurts, i will tell the truth, but cushion it to decrease the damage .. so the person can actually keep what you've said in mind even if he/she was hurt ..
    Live, and let live ..

  20. #20
    MasterMind Member
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    Indeed and if they are dealing with a stressful issue that causes them to do quesitonable things...if you approach it in a helpful manner and not to point blame perhaps they would take it into consideration and think about changing their ways. If not and they become angry then is best to let it lie and if their behavior continues to hurt you despite attempts to help then there is no need to be around that person any longer.


    "Be in love with your memories because they make you who you are today..."

    My blog: marianna68.wordpress.com

  21. #21
    Royal Son El Rey's Avatar
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    you can hint it to them instead of saying it directly
    i also tend to say the truth whenever i feel it's necessary but when i feel it's going to hurt the person i just say it as i was making fun or kedding. ( it depends on how you tell the truth, you just have to understand the person first).

    and as others said truth hurts but i believe it's also the best thing to do.
    Born 2 Rule
    Carpe Diem

  22. #22
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    I always try not 2 hurt sum1 but sometimes they end up getting hurt..lol..

    .:.BoOmChIkAwAwA.:.

  23. #23
    Magnetic Nella's Avatar
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    well, before attempting to tell someone i'm not really close to the truth, i usually imagine myself in their shoes. would i be hurt if someone said this to me? i never bother being totally honest with someone i don't know, i mean..what harm can making someone's day do? i'd rather give them a push up than making them feel down, especially if my criticism or whatever, is about something they've worked so hard for.

    but with people close to me, it's another story. i tell them the truth 'cause i just care for them so much. i wouldn't want them deceived. but even then i don't come out totally blunt, i believe everyone should choose their words carefully before telling someone they care for the bitter truth.

  24. #24
    i has a madol! minerva's Avatar
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    ^^totally agree nella. you say the truth to a person if it's going to make any difference and if the truth will bring out a positive effect.
    no use telling a friend 'my goodness your nose is so huge and crooked, it's awful' (ok far fetched example lol)...cos that would make them sink in a hole and lower their self esteem, plus it would be a really *****y thing to say.
    but saying 'i prefer you wearing red instead of yellow, cos it makes you look ill' is something else.

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