Honesty is amongst the better policies, right up there with the No Child Left Behind Act (in theory) and just behind “Let people off the train before you start getting on it,” in terms of general value.
But we’re sensitive to too much honesty. A bowlful of sugar is the only thing that makes the medicine go down. But a reluctance to criticize our friends is a disservice. However, too much callin’ ’em like we see ’em is a bummer, too. That’s why you need your one starkly honest pal to give you a lift on the straight talk express.
Here are nine reasons to love that best friend even more than you already do.
1. They don’t hold back from delivering the truth.
My brother-in-law is famous (in some circles, jeez, literal much?) for saying, “Facts are friendly.” But he’s wrong; facts are neutral and dispassionate. Your blunt friend should be able deliver news sans theatrics.
2. They save you from fashion faux pas.
Are you red-green dichromatic and desperately need to know when your colors are clashing? Has your body shape altered significantly since you bought those sweet suede jeans? Do you periodically tuck your skirt back into your tights after using the toilet? Your blunt friend will let you know that, whatever the case, you need to shape up it up, pronto.
3. Their observations can be witty and funny.
While I think silly voices are what make things funny, a mixture of keen observation and dynamite timing does it for most people. Your blunt friend is a master of the “out of the mouth of babes” style of comedy even when she doesn’t mean to be.
4. They know how to break the ice.
Your painfully candid friend will break the tension in a room by pointing at the elephant in the room and saying, “That’s an elephant, y’all!” And that generally leads to a conversation regarding what to do about the elephant or how to escape its tendency to crush and/or gore things.
5. They can dish it out AND take it.
I have three really close friends who are sledgehammer blunt and only one of them appreciates the same treatment. You can surely use your blunt friend’s aversion or affinity to her own medicine to your advantage.
6. No, thank YOU very much.
When a friend has a rep for punch-in-the-gut honesty, it feels like a hot tub massage chair full of MDMA when she says, “Awesome work! You’re the best.” While said friend could still be blowing smoke up your keister, it’s likely that she’s being honest.
7. They have your back when confronting enemies.
Your frank friend (or whatever his name is) is right there when you need a little bit of ammo for dealing with a rival, frenemy or nemesis. You’re too nice to counter Ronda’s derisive comments about your dating life with the fact that her husband sleeps around. And stop laughing Carla, you slept with him, too. Thank you, painfully honest friend.
8. You know exactly where you stand with them.
I’m not saying you’re one of these women, but a lot of women I know have spent at least one night too many lying in bed with the thought, “What the f*ck did that birch mean by that ship?”
9. There’s never a dull moment with your brusque buddy.
Yes, you’ve had to say the words, “That’s not what she meant!” too many times to count but the fortune “May you live in interesting times” is both a blessing and a curse.
Listen, radical honesty, as an ethos, isn’t for everyone but let’s all thank our lucky stars that we all have a friend or two who shoots straight and doesn’t sugarcoat anything other than nuts.