Caring Enough to Talk Straight

November 15, 2011

Caring enough to talk straight is a scary thought. Over my many years of engaging in female friendship, I have found “talking straight” to be a bit of a Russian Roulette game. Sometimes the straight talk is embraced and makes the difference you intend for it to make. Other times, straight talk seems to be, and maybe actually is, appreciated in the moment but later, it boomerangs and you are the one on the outside because you told it like you saw it. Did you ever have that experience? My mother always told me I wasn’t a good poker player because I couldn’t bluff well. Maybe you have the same challenges and work to say what you want to say without damaging the relationship. For the most part, I’ve experienced friends appreciating “straight talk” even though at the moment it may not feel good. When I’ve been able to separate the message from my love of the person I’m talking candidly with, I’ve been able to express both fully. “I love and care about you and our friendship. And this is what I see and want to tell you, hopefully with compassion and sensitivity.” The alternative is to move the relationship to one of “being careful”. Walking on eggshells isn’t fun either. Where have you found yourself being careful, even with the closest of friends? What has that been like for you? Please share your experiences and thank you in advance for your generosity. Margaret

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