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When Your Opinion Really Matters: Do You Always Need to Tell Your Friends the Truth?

When Your Opinion Really Matters: Do You Always Need to Tell Your Friends the Truth?

I don’t know where I would be without my friends. For as long as I can remember I have always gone to them when I needed advice or help with something in my life. Most of the time, I really appreciated their honesty because if you can’t hear the truth from someone you love then who can you hear the truth from?

However, there are those times when I don’t want the truth.

That is what got me thinking about times when I might have given unsolicited advice. Was it really worth letting my friend know the honest truth about something at that moment when they didn’t ask?

It is one of those things when you really need to read the situation and see if the truth will benefit your friend or if you think the truth will benefit you more. I have been in a situation when I held the truth until my friend asked and with another friend when I was maybe a little too honest all the time. Can you guess which one backfired?

My friend was in a relationship with a really nice guy but in the back of my mind I never really saw her ending up with him. So she dated him for a few years. They broke up and I had to admit I was relieved because he and her needed to find people who ignited some sort of passion. They ended up getting back together a few months later because let’s face it is not easy breaking up with people. Sometimes we have to do it a few times for it to really stick.

When she was considering breaking up with him she asked for my honest opinion about her situation because she really wasn’t sure what to do, or she wasn’t ready to admit the truth to herself yet. So I told her that I thought he was a great guy and very nice but I just didn’t see her and him together for the long haul. I told her that I have never seen a spark with them. Luckily she was ready to hear this so when they broke up she had all the things she needed to make the hard choice to finally move on. This is an instance where the truth was helpful.

My other friend who often came to me for advice about her mistakes with other friends, boys, school, work, etc. Eventually it got frustrating to see her make these mistakes over and over again especially sat and listened to her talk about them all the time. So partly out of my own frustration, I would tell her like it was. However, after awhile she no longer wanted my opinion. So she ended up not telling me anything because she didn’t want my opinion or she thought my truth was attacking and judging her. Though I never thought I was judging her, I can see how she would feel like that looking back now. Lesson is she didn’t deserve the complete and honest truth all the time from me.

When it comes to friends — most of the time by this age — they love you for who you are, mistakes and all.

But there is a fine line between when you need to bring the tough love and when you just need to listen and support. I feel like we go to people looking for their opinions, but most of the time, we are hoping for the answer we want to hear and not the answer we need to hear.

That is why you need to choose your moments wisely. You want to make sure your friend really listens to what you have to say if it is really that important to you.

Has there ever been a time where you had a little too much truth from a friend?

About the Author

Lauren Alexander

Lauren graduated from Hofstra University with a bachelor's degree in communications and a minor in psychology. She enjoys spinning, crafting, and Saints football. She is currently getting her teaching credential with hope to inspire future generations.