A friend asks for your opinion on his new hairstyle, or blog, which you don’t like. But you tell him, it’s nice. He asks if you’d go watch a movie with him this weekend, but you’d rather just lie around the house. You tell him, you have relatives coming over.
Why do we tell these little white lies? Probably, the most popular answer would be to spare someone’s feelings. After all, a white lie isn’t doing any harm to anyone, and if it helps avoid hurting someone, then why not? You’ve probably done this, and probably, will again in the future.
I’m no saint; I have done this too. Not that I’m proud of it. But, I have been trying to avoid this as much as possible. And it’s not without reason.
First of all, let me come clean: I’m not a parent myself, so maybe I can’t see a parent’s point of view. But I have been a child [some say, myself included, that I am one, even now 😉 ] and have wanted to say the following to parents (to some parents anyway):
The best thing a parent can do for their children is to not try to control them. Advise them, share your experiences and knowledge with them. Be there for them when they fall, because they will. But give them the freedom to make their own mistakes; teach them how to learn from their mistakes and not repeat them. You might think you can protect your children, but you can’t, not really – you can just prepare them.
Let them dream, let them dare. Let them define what they can do, and what they can’t.
We have all given in to the temptation of revenge or hate at some point. Maybe, and I hope that is the case, not to the extent of committing a grave crime like a murder or something similar, but small “misdeeds” like swearing at somebody in traffic just because they cut you off earlier, or saying hurtful things to someone just because their words hurt you first.
Sometimes we intentionally do things that hurt others, either physically, financially, emotionally, or boost our ego at the expense of others’, but as soon as the deed is done, we feel bad ourselves because of what we did. We don’t like the person performing these actions (ourselves), yet we tend to repeat them over and over on other similar occasions. We’d normally not engage in these actions, but we allow ourselves to change, just for that moment, just to “get back” at the other person.