Being honest would’ve saved me two years of turbulencePublished 11:06am Friday, August 31, 2012
But it’s not just young love, mind you. My best friend from childhood delighted in announcing the outlandish adventures that her social-security collecting mother was experiencing with a new boyfriend after the demise of her third marriage.
“She jumped out of a plane, yesterday!” cried Donna, over lunch. “And last week, she decided to go out deer hunting by herself to impress him and when she didn’t show up by noon, we were worried sick and drove out to find her.”
“Was she OK?” I asked, spearing a forkful of salad.
“Oh, yeah. We found her, fast asleep, hanging from a harness and leaning out of a deer-stand about 20 feet up a tree, rifle still crooked under her arm.”
“Now, that’s love.” I declared.
“That’s stupid.” Donna corrected. “She could have been killed.”
I wouldn’t call it stupid but perhaps dishonest. We’re all relatively guilty of pretending we’re far more interested in a particular pursuit if we feel it will earn us brownie-points with a potential new paramour. However, if healthy relationships are to be built upon a foundation of honesty, perhaps it’s not a wise choice to make. Donna’s mother could have simply waved her hand and said, “Look, Walt, I’ve already been through three husbands and it’s time I start doing what I want to do, which is going out to the theatre and joining a book club, not jumping out of planes and certainly not fly fishing in Alaska. Those waders make my butt look huge.”
But then, who knows when one might ever have such an opportunity at love, again, in late life?
In my case, being honest would have saved me two years of turbulence had I just stated flatly, upon arriving in San Diego, “I’m sorry, this is nuts. And take off that stupid tinfoil hat. You look like a giant Jiffy-Pop.”
So it didn’t work out, however, we remained friends. In fact, I often hear people who are divorced, say, “It’s funny, but now that we’re divorced, we get along great!”
You know why? Because when you’re simply friends, you’re comfortable being completely honest. You don’t hesitate to say to a friend, “You know I love you to death, but if you don’t stop talking about horses, I’m going to dive through that window.”
Hey, wait a minute…