The Brutal Truth

This is going to hurt.

There are some people who are proud of their ability to tell the “brutal truth.”

But Truth isn’t brutal or kind — people are those things. So maybe the truth isn’t brutal — you are.

Is that hard to hear?

That’s because it’s not kind.

The Truth: we have a veneer of social nicety that stands in for 
our better selves. Politeness is a flavor of kindness. It covers the “brutal” aspect of ourselves — the one that criticizes and finds fault and is utterly convinced that if other people would just get their shit together, our world would be so much better. But the brutal other-critiquing is also a veneer — it covers the soft and vulnerable part of us, deep inside. The one that’s fearful of being judged, of being incompetent, of being ugly not just in the way society likes to tell us comprises physical ugliness but the truly soul-deep kind.

We fear we are brutal; so we weaponize that fear.

I’m not impressed by people who tell the “brutal truth” about others… I’m impressed when they’re willing to expose their softer sides to the world and say “I care, I love, I hope… and the truth is that I’m afraid I will never be enough.”

That Truth is the kind that can change the world.