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disagree or agree: It is impossible always being honest to your friends.I have to say I...

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ritared | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 23, 2013 at 6:04 AM via web

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disagree or agree: It is impossible always being honest to your friends.I have to say I enjoy the "unconditioned supports" from my female friends. However,some people insist that without honesty people even don't bother mentioning friendship.So what's your opion? If you can provide me with detailed and specific reasons, I would really appriate it.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted January 23, 2013 at 6:13 AM (Answer #2)

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I don't think it's a good idea to be totally and bluntly honest with your friends.  I mean, if you think someone is doing something dumb, and you come right out and say it in so many words, you're likely to make them defensive.  They'll be less likely to take your advice.  So I think that you need to be at least very tactful in how you state the truth.  That can sometimes shade over into being untruthful, but I think it's better than excessive bluntness.

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rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted January 23, 2013 at 3:41 PM (Answer #3)

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There are times when friends need to hear the blunt, unvarnished truth. If their behavior is self-destructive, dangerous, or highly offensive to others, they need to hear about it in no uncertain terms. But generally it is best, whenever possible, to exercise tact. This can mean addressing the issue in an inoffensive way, or it can be a matter of reminding them that you are confronting them with the truth because you are their friend and care about them. Above all, these situations should always be handled discretely, and it's certainly better to address such concerns with the person involved rather than talking about them behind their back.

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e-martin | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted January 23, 2013 at 4:46 PM (Answer #4)

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Can you be completely honest in a friendship? I think the answer is yes. If it is actually possible to be completely honest at all, then it is possible to be completely honest in a friendship. 

Is it advisable to be completely honest in a friendship? I agree with both posts above suggesting that, on the one hand, it is sometimes best to soften the truth or avoid it to spare a person's feelings and, on the other hand, there are times when people need to hear hard truths.

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litteacher8 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted January 23, 2013 at 8:15 PM (Answer #5)

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I don't know if it is possible or desirable to be completely honest.  You can tell the truth if asked a question, but you do not always want to share everything.  My rule is  to not volunteer certain information, but give an honest answer if asked.

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sesh | Student, Grade 12 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted January 24, 2013 at 11:36 AM (Answer #6)

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I wouldn't lie a friend, but there are some things that we don't like to reveal. Keeping them to ourselves does't mean we are dishonest. If asked i would be tactful enough to tell any truth without hurting the friend, but i woudn't tell everything.

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clairewait | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted January 24, 2013 at 6:54 PM (Answer #7)

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I wouldn't lie a friend, but there are some things that we don't like to reveal. Keeping them to ourselves does't mean we are dishonest. If asked i would be tactful enough to tell any truth without hurting the friend, but i woudn't tell everything.

I'm glad you brought this up. This was my first question. Is withholding information or opinions in friendship the same thing as lying? I've taught my five-year-old that it is. However, it is done in courts with regularity, and considered acceptable.

I think a key to successful relationships includes knowing and understanding how to be sensitive to the other's feelings, and knowing how to communicate "truth" in a way that the friend can receive it as positively as possible.

That said, I tend to fail in the area of sensitivity in many of my relationships, and on the flip side, most regard me as a "friend" who will more likely be blunt and honest instead of sensitive, and my closest friendships tend to thrive as a result. It might also help to hear that I have very few of such close friends.

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