Some men vigorously protested that emotional honesty with a woman is suicidal, and that one of two things would surely occur. First, that the relationship would instantly become a friendship and love would be out the window. Second, that women don’t respect men who are emotionally honest.
The truth is: there are few, if any, successful relationships in which emotional honesty doesn’t play a significant role. The goal is for men to break through their existing relationship barriers and create a deeper dialogue. This pushes a lot of folks past their comfort zone, but that’s how emotional growth is achieved.
The purpose of men being emotionally honest isn’t just to satisfy women, but also to live in integrity as men. A man who shares his emotional truth is simply being honest.
But what does that look like to women, and what’s their perception of that man? There’s an enormous difference between a man being emotional, and a man being emotionally honest.
When women said they wanted men to be more emotional, sometimes what they got instead was emotional men, not emotionally honest men. There’s some confusion regarding the difference.
Women respect a man who demonstrates the courage, confidence, skill, and willingness to articulate how he’s feeling about them. Women don’t necessarily respect men who are just being emotional.
The dilemma for men is due, in part, to the ambivalent manner in which women sometimes treat men who express their authentic feelings. Women can’t have it both ways if they want to know how a man is feeling about them.
Verbalizing emotional honesty isn’t second nature for most men, and men deserve to be respected, not judged.
I love how we keep going back and forth in terms of men and women, safe unsafe -rather than get to the heart of the matter: Once again: A great documentary: The Mask You Live in. Finally something that allows boys and men the opportunity to lean in...if they want to.
Besides, I think it is good for men to feel their own integrity within their own body. Just as it is good for us women.
The Paradoxical Commandments
People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.
The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.
People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.
Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.”
― Kent M. Keith, The Silent Revolution: Dynamic Leadership in the Student Council
A lie may take care of the present, but it has no future. ~ unknown author
Emotional Dishonesty: repression of true feelings. Not acknowledging to self and/or others true emotional reactions. Society reinforces this choice by valuing politeness and repression of what are considered negative or aggressive emotions.
One of our biggest enemies during our healing process is our emotional dishonesty. When we say, “it really did not hurt us that much”, “ it wasn’t such a big deal”, “she didn’t really mean to do it”…we are taking away importance from our reaction to an incident or trauma. We all try to excuse the people who do us wrong. We say, “they didn’t understand”, “they didn’t know”, “they didn’t mean it”, “they didn’t realize”, “they didn’t know any better.” In many cases those statements are true and applicable. What is not true is the statement which follows, which is usually: “it really wasn’t that bad for me.” “That is the emotional dishonesty. We underestimate and/or repress our true reactions. We displace that energy into our physical body or energy anatomy. If there is a big enough reaction there can be a shattering and a detaching of part of our astral body including some filaments of our mind. This is kama/manas (emotions/mind) and it leaves the center part of our system. We accept that people do us wrong. The true issue comes from not accepting how we truly feel. When we reject those emotional reactions, we reject a part of ourselves. We have to reject that part of ourselves in order to say, “it wasn’t really that bad.”
Society rewards emotional dishonesty. People with perennial smiles, people who repress appropriate anger are considered superior in social graces and civility. While this might be good for society in that it creates fewer emotional disturbances, it is fatal for the individual. Society is a reflection of its individuals. Eventually this emotional dishonesty, which underlies illness, affects all.
Respect for the Truth is an acquired taste. ~ Mark Van Doren
Self-forgiveness is often the first step toward a more loving and positive relationship with yourself, and therefore with others.