I will start this article with a list of questions that we all can ask ourselves and answer them to ourselves only.
“Why do I put a password on my phone?”
“Am I comfortable handing over my phone to my better half?”
“Do I whisper on my phone in my spouse’s presence or talk normally?”
“Can I share where I have gone or whom I have met or what I talk with my better half?”
“Do I delete a few of my chat logs fearing my spouse can read them?”
“Am I an enigma for my spouse?”
“Do I hide anything from him or her?”
“Do I have a constant fear that something might be revealed?”
And the list can go on…
Don’t get me wrong, these questions are not only for you to answer or go through, but they are applicable for me as well. And there will be many other exceptions and situations where these questions are not applicable. But I am sure, we all understand what I am talking about.
The above questions I set keeping a marital relationship in mind and I can have different sets of questions for different kinds of relationships or friendships that exist in this world too.
They can be –
“Do I pretend to love one friend but say otherwise in front of him or her?”
“Do I gossip which about a friend without verifying the truth behind a matter?”
“Do I keep things hidden from my parents or sister or brother or any close friends?”
Again, the list can be stretched to any length possible.
All this process of question and answer mentioned above are pointing at one serious and most important attribute a person in a relationship should have is Truthfulness.
Speaking the truth or truthfulness or honesty are almost close to each other. Honesty is expressing our feelings and opinions accurately and Truth is an accurate representation of what is real. Honesty is more expressions and feelings driven. Truth is more facts and information-driven. But they both, truth and honesty go hand in hand in any sort of relationship that exists on this earth. So being truthful and honest to our spouses or friends is of utmost importance in a marital relationship or in a friendship. Although there is a flip side to this subject which we need to understand clearly. We should not mix up with the difference between secrets and privacy. We need to remember that privacy is a personal boundary around someone’s own thoughts, ideas, and information that don’t directly involve his or her better half. But a secret is something which is intentionally kept hidden from spouses for the fear of being caught or judgement.
Writing down so many preachy advises don’t really help if I don’t plunge into the root cause of people telling lies to or hiding things from their spouses or friends whom they love so much or at least claim them as own.
Let me explain it with a real case study:
A husband observed his wife to be quite secretive for a last couple of days. He has never seen her going out of the room while talking to someone over the phone before. But these days he observed she is trying to get away from him while she is on the phone. He also observed that she snatches her phone away or cover her phones when he comes close to her phone or when he tries to touch her phone. He was surprised with her recent actions and reactions because he has never seen her behaving like this before. She used to leave her phone with him all the time without a worry previously but why she was behaving like this now was really strange.
He was suspicious now about her actions and planned to check her phone once when she is either taking bath or something. One day he got the opportunity and saw the messages. He was surprised, hurt as well as upset to see her chat log with one particular person.
He confronted her and she was annoyed knowing why he had to check her phone and messages. He fought back saying why she had to hide things from him, her husband. They had a big fight over this.
He was hurt and was terribly upset and rightly so but he decided to leave her to her condition and wait. One day, he saw her depressed and troubled. He asked the reason behind her being so sad or upset. She shared that her friend is ignoring her and that has hurt her. He was patient and heard her agony and slowly she opened up. She said she was feeling very vulnerable and when this boy messaged her from nowhere and spoke well, they became good friends. The husband asked why she had to hide it from him and she said she was scared thinking about how he will react. He smiled and said how he has so many female friends and it is alright to have a friend. And soon she allowed him to handle her phone and never behaved as he was doing for some time.
If we want our partners to be honest and truthful with us, then we have to be a skilled listener and communicator because relationship demands two-way communication.
As a good listener, the husband in the above-mentioned case study displayed the following attributes to let the wife speak the truth to him. And those are vital for all of us to learn and practice in our lives as well.
- The husband was hurt and angry but wasn’t unreasonable and impatient which allowed the wife space to understand his point of view.
- He was non-judgmental and that’s the reason she found the courage and felt safe to discuss her heart’s matter with him.
- He was open-minded which made her disclose everything one after the other.
- He didn’t impose his personal views but allowed her to ask for suggestions when she felt ignored by the other person.
- He didn’t force her to tell everything all at once but gave her time and space.
- He never jumped to any conclusion about the relationship between his wife with that other person which made her to rely on him.
And their marital journey became smoother in respect to the issue that they encountered in their life for some time.
Friends! Remember, truthfulness and honesty are the foundation stones for the trust in a relationship, and trust is the fuel for any relationship to function, flourish and move on.
Are you ready to encounter Truth and Honesty in your relationship and friendship? Does your partner or friend know who exactly you are? Do you wear a mask of lies or something that you want to hide from him or her???
Keep reading and keep thinking about it.