Keeping my hand on the spatula I told myself, “I will say nothing but the truth” and then lied blatantly through my teeth. I felt like the biggest hypocrite there ever was yet felt proud for averting an unpleasant situation. Giving lip service to someone out of societal obligation must be made an enforced offense. 😉
Before you form any opinions about me please be informed that I’m married for over twelve years now. As a new bride I faced the regular ‘teething problems’ most girls coming from independent and progressive backgrounds do. I was amused no end when my otherwise upfront mother advised me to massage my mother-in-law’s ego by being overtly appreciative of her.
This resulted in some cruelly hilarious incidents, at my cost.
“This is a nice bedsheet” meant that I came back home with its hideous counterpart.
“I love this dish” had me getting fed till I could burst open.
“I feel like going out somewhere” was taken as a wish to visit a temple nearby.
“Why don’t we go shopping?” sent us to the grocery shop with our day maid.
You get the gist? *headpalm*
Imagine the horror when one day I decided to actually speak the truth!
“Have I lost weight?” incredulously met with my straight-faced “I don’t think so” and went quiet.
“My son can do everything” had me wondering aloud “Why can’t he still make tea?” and blamed my expectations.
“You don’t respect me” met with my stoic silence. (Murder is a crime even when instigated, at all times after all!) 😀
I’ve gained a reputation of being candid but that saves me from a lot of heartburn and guilt. My friends know that with me ‘what you see is what you get’ and accept me the way I am.
I respect people who are brave enough to tell the truth. That said, making someone feel better with an undeserved but gentle compliment is a gesture of generosity. Good manners and truth are not to be mixed here! 🙂