Listen, the phrase "honesty is the best policy" is one of those things we say, but we don't really mean as a blanket statement. Honesty is not, has never been, and will never be the best policy in every situation.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not out here advocating for lying our faces off - but there are some situations where the truth just isn't necessarily the kindest, safest, or most productive route.
Don't believe me? I'll prove it with the help of everyone's favorite website, Reddit. Reddit user tinythunder15 asked:
The responses were full of situations that some of us may never even have imagined, some of which we hope to never find ourselves in. Take a look, but brace. Some of this got really, really sad.
No Need To Relive It
When the patient with dementia asks you, again, where their deceased spouse/child/other very important person in their life is.
Telling the truth only makes them relive the horror and despair of finding out that that person has passed away all over again.
I worked with a guy who had dementia and killed his wife. He was in an inpatient psychiatric facility that was locked and secured. He couldn't remember anything for more than 20 minutes. He would regularly ask us why his wife wasn't coming to visit him. One time his son told him out of spite and he flew into a self destructive depressive rage.
Half hour later the guy didn't understand why his knuckles were bruised and sore and why the wall was bloodied. He seemed like a really nice guy and had created this persona that he was a loving husband who would do anything for his wife, wrote her three love letters a day, and wanted to help others. It's almost like he forget he was this jealous monster who killed his wife when she tried to divorce him.
In either event, we just stopped telling him. We would say "Maybe tomorrow" knowing that he wouldn't remember asking us by lunch, let alone tomorrow.
Does telling someone the truth and dropping crushing news on them making them come to the realization that their world is a lie and they killed the person they loved the most 5-6 times a day when they can't do anything about it or change who they are through introspection really benefit anyone?
I can think of instances where I was genuinely ok with lying - and they all focused around caring with people with memory issues. Sometimes it was about granddad being dead, other times it was about forgetting to do mundane stuff that didn't really matter. For example if they asked around naptime: "Did I start the laundry?" I would just say yes, then go see if the laundry is started once she's asleep, and if not, I would start it.
Sometimes people with those issues ask if they're a burden, or if you're ok. You tell them they're not a burden, and you're ok... because I mean, wtf else are you gonna say? "It's hard, and yes, it's a burden, but you're family, and you couldn't stop me from caring for ya if you tried." They wouldn't understand and it would make them feel guilty.
I wasn't ok, but I always told her I was doing fine. Sometime grandmom was a proper wench to me towards the end (dementia sucks), but when she was having lucid moments and asked about how she was doing at other times, I told her she was fine and generally just sleepy. There was no point in making her feel bad over something she can't control.
So... generally, when people are in their sunset years I'm fine with lying for kindness. I'm not necessarily gonna say what's "better" because it isn't on me to judge you; but I'll say that I understand people in those situations are all just doing the best they can, and I don't fault people either for lying, or for telling a harsh truth every once in a while.
Only The "Mentally Strong"
Interviews. I was asked so what have you been doing the past year because it had been over a year since my graduation. I, like an idiot, answered honestly and replied that I was in a depression, but now I'm fine.
So when the the roll call came for the name of selected candidates the first thing the person who was announcing said that they needed "mentally strong" people.
The Ambulance Lie
Telling someone in the ambulance that they're going to live.
I have a friend who is an ambo. He tells patients he's never had someone die in his ambulance... which is technically true. Because they refuse to declare someone dead in the truck, because otherwise they have to drive to the morgue and fill out a bunch of paperwork. Instead, they continue to administer CPR until they get to the hospital and let the on duty doctor declare the time of death. That way the body is the hospitals problem and not theirs.
I was looking into becoming an EMT a few years ago. They taught us never to tell a patient they're going to live. Instead, you're supposed to dodge the question by saying, "We're doing our best to help you."
You've never had to lie to someone in the back of an ambulance then. When someone is dying, those BS platitudes are pretty obvious.
SCENARIO : You're the single occupant of a vehicle driving between 50-70mph that has struck a deer at night. The deer entered the passenger compartment. The antlers of the deer have penetrated your chest.
An ambulance arrives 16 minutes after the impact (this is practically light-speed if you're rural) and the ambulance crew (EMT-B and EMT-P..because you're lucky and it's a 3-person crew) look at you, as you realize you feel cold and numb and you ask "Hey...am I going to be OK?"...as you cough up some blood from the growing hemothorax in your chest...
......uh....*ahem......er...."!!!!WE ARE DOING OUR BEST TO HELP YOU!!!!"......please don't die.....
you hear.. in a robotic, terrified voice... from the EMT who is working on you. You feel good about that.... or maybe you want someone to lie to you (because who knows... maybe they're wrong and you're gonna live anyway?)
It just doesn't always work. You go ahead and tell people who are dying that you're not allowed to discuss statistical averages... see how well that goes down sport.
Safety Over HonestyGiphy
When you're lgbt and your parents are extremely homophobic/transphobic. Basically, when telling the truth will put you in danger.
If you're gay in Iran, its definitely better to lie.
White Lies Save Lives
When you are speaking to a person who is about commit suicide. Speak as if life is better, even if it isn't at the moment. I'm not saying you should 100% lie, but if you lie (in case you NEED to lie) enough to get that person to seek help instead of committing the act, you will understand the need of a little lie.
As someone who's been on the other side, I'm glad my best friend lied when he had no f-ing clue what was really gonna happen. I'm here today and I'm thankful.
If a guest at my hotel is hiding from an abusive SO or parent(s) and the abuser(s) show up or call looking for them, I'm certainly going to lie and say I've never heard of the person they're looking for. I've worked in hotels for nearly two decades, and on a few occasions over the years have actually dealt with this situation.
Lying To Kids
I fully support lying to kids. Whenever they make a crappy art project, tell them it's great. Sing terribly along to a song, tell them it was great. I want my kids to be confident. There are enough people in the world who are going to tell them they suck, they need to KNOW that there are people who will think they and what they do is awesome.
Maybe To Protect Them
It's a feeling, I want to tell my parents that I had a horrible day at school and that I feel sad but... I just can't... it's better that we are happier. Maybe it's to protect them, maybe it's to prevent them from prying, or maybe take action.
A Matter Of Public Safety
I had a friend who's grandma had severe dementia. She'd get out money to pay for a delivered pizza, and when the pizza came, she couldn't find it. She also would be driving and forget where to go and blackout sometimes. My friend ended up telling her grandma that she got her license taken away to protect her and everyone else on the road.
CPR And Everything
When there's a vehicle accident and the involved party asks you if the other party is okay and you know they're dead.
The driver was performing CPR and everything on this dude who was drunk riding his bicycle on the wrong side of the road with no lights at night. It wasn't his fault, but he never could have lived with himself.
We held the scene (as we usually do when there's a fatal accident) and I had to lie to the driver that the bicyclist was okay in the hospital.
Call Me ShallowGiphy
May be an unpopular opinion, but I think there are times when lying to someone about why you are breaking up is the right thing to do. To be clear, I only think this is a good idea if it is a very young relationship or you haven't been dating very long. If you are in a long term relationship, you owe it to that person to be honest at that point.
So for instance, earlier this year I was dating a girl for a bout a month. Initially I wanted to make the relationship work, because she was a really sweet girl. But as we saw each other more and more, I started to realize that I just wasn't that physically attracted to her. Call me shallow if you want, but physical attraction is an important thing in a relationship. I thought that maybe I could gloss over this in light of her other qualities. But it became something that I started to think about more and more.
So I eventually decided to break things off with her. When I did, I just told her that I didn't think I was ready for a relationship right now and that we should probably just be friends. Which was a lie. But being honest with her would have meant saying something like "I just don't find you that physically attractive." Which to me, is far more damaging and just kind of mean.
Whether or not people want to admit it, I think that this is honestly pretty common. With a great many breakups, there's the reason that they gave you, and then there's the real reason.
Tell Them When They're Older
When my kids ask about their grandfather, my father. All the young kids in my immediate family think he died from a heart attack. Truth is he shot himself while both him and I were home. When they're older i tell them the truth, but no need to put that on a little kid.
How many men (as a woman) you've slept with. It really makes them either upset that they probably aren't the "best," or upset they aren't the first. It's truly a double standard I hate.
The Truth Is Dangerous
It might be a messed up idea, but if lying helps you in a situation or simply makes a situation better than lie. I mean yeah if the situation will be resolved or handled better with honesty then, by all means, tell the truth.
They say the truth will set you free, I, on the other hand, say sometimes the truth is too dangerous.
When the truth would cause unnecessary harm.
A friend of mine was prepping to break up with her fiance, and then she died after some medical complications. They were living together and planning their wedding at this point. At her funeral I recounted some sweet stories of them together that she had shared, and told him how much she loved him.
Telling him anything else would have been cruel. She isn't coming back, and there would be only pain from knowing the truth.
Chillin' With Jake
When you're still living with your parents but your leaving to go have sexy time.
"Hey guys, going to chill with Jake, might spend the night. Dont wait up!"
Am I going to tell my saint of a mother I'm going to have premarital sex? Never ever!
Here's my story. My (now) wife bought an engagement ring off the internet. She read 18k gold so that's what she thought she got. Well turns out it was 18k gold PLATED over lead. How did I find out? Stones kept falling out and when the jeweler cleaned it, it basically became nothing.
I knew she'd never forgive herself if she found out. So I paid for the mold to be made of the exact ring with real gold and stones. I will take that to my grave.
The Gestapo is knocking on your door, asking if you're hiding anyone. You are. LIE.
If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
People typically think of cannabis legalization as one of those cut and dry things.
If you don't use marijuana, you probably don't want to legalize it.
If you do use marijuana, you are probably pro-legalization.
... except it's not that simple.
Reddit user SaifurCloudstrife asked:
"Redditors opposed to marijuana legalization and decriminalization: Why?"
Normally when these types of questions are asked, you get a bunch of people who are pro-the-thing chiming in and that absolutely happened here.
Interestingly, that opened up discourse that got people actually talking—probably more than they normally would have. The constant back and forth helped people get down to the core of their beliefs and reasons.
I can't say minds or hearts were changed, or even that people had particularly good reasons (and there were some not-great counter arguments, let's be real) when it came right down to it, but conversations were certainly had...
"It's a drug."
"I have two examples in my close family that clearly show how devastating pot can be. This attitude to marijuana reminds me of the attitude towards cocaine in the mid to late seventies when everyone thought it was harmless 'nose candy.' "
"I'm against sentences for drug possession but many people would benefit from dealers serving 3-5 for selling pot."
"Honestly, I think everyone against it should come to Canada for a visit. It's been legal here for 4 years and absolutely NONE of the spooky stories have come true."
"The only real differences is that people buy their weed in nice, clean stores with clear labels and not on street corners and our tax dollars don't go towards harassing people for a weekend indulgence."Giphy
"It stinks and makes people lazy."
"And often the weed smokers don't care if they are a pain in the butt to others and that kind of apathy is a huge no for me."Giphy
"I live in WA, where rec weed is legal."
"I rarely ever smell pot smoke. And I have the nose of a bloodhound."
"Yes, more often than as a teen when it was still illegal, but far less than any amount to be pro-prohibition about it."
"Plus, I mean, there's lots of smells I f*cking hate but wouldn't enact harmful laws over- Axe body spray being one."
"Laws can be made regarding where you can smoke."
"In Australia you can't smoke inside or within a certain distance to entryways. The only space you smell smoke is at an outdoor pub, designated smoking areas and occasionally when walking."
"It took years, but people become accustomed to new rules. Knowing Americans though, you guys will be on the brink of civil war if they brought in similar restrictions."
It's TOO Good
"I've read that the potency in pot these days is a hell of a lot stronger compared to say 20 or 30 yrs ago."
"The huge increase in THC levels should be a huge concern for people. The pot being legalized today is not the same I smoked when I was much younger."
"This argument has been rolled out again and again since I was in elementary school (~30 years ago) and I never understood it."
"THC is remarkably non-toxic, it's so much less toxic than many common substances people ingest on a regular basis (aspirin, and plenty of other OTC meds, as examples), to the point where actual THC toxicity is caused by physical rather than chemical/metabolic actions."
"Smoked cannabis is also much easier to titrate (dose appropriately), since the effects are nearly instantaneous - take a couple hits and you'll know if you've had enough within seconds."Giphy
"As opposed to an accidental edible overdose where you might not know for a couple hours that you've taken a heroic dose."
"So a higher % of THC by weight in cannabis flower shouldn't be an issue, especially considering that back in D.A.R.E. they used to tell us that smoking cannabis was SO MUCH WORSE than smoking tobacco."
"Cannabis was supposedly so much 'harsher,' one joint contains 'toxins' equivalent to an entire pack of cigs, etc...which is total bull, but even if that were true...wouldn't that mean that stronger cannabis is less harmful, since you don't have to smoke so much to achieve the desired effect?"
"Can't have it both ways."
It is high potency because it is illegal. It's easier to transport a half pound of skunk than 10 pounds of trash weed."
"Look at states that have legalized. There are low thc strains available and easily accessible."
"Because dipsh*ts will start smoking it in public places where others can not really avoid it, like is the case with cigarettes currently."
"Also yes: F*ck cigarettes."
"Yep my problem is drugs in public."
"I do not care if you do drugs as long as your doing them in a private place. I don't want to breathe in your smoke and get lung cancer."
"I don't especially care what folks get up to on their own, it's when they make everyone around them a participant that it aggravates me."
"Plus, depending on the setting, it's really inconsiderate."
"I have a friend whose job does random drug testing and he left a bar because a bunch of folks were smoking inside and he was worried about work."Giphy
Go Away, Government!
"I'm for legalization but as someone that worked for corporate cannabis, I'd loathe seeing those scums run the market."
"My state Governor tried writing a recreational cannabis bill on their own terms since we are surrounded by recreational territories."
"They stated they didn't want it to lead to a ballot measure because that's worst case scenario (didnt think voters were educated) than proceeded to write the most comically bad legalization bill that existed - before completely dropping it because they couldn't write a competent law."
"I am about as anti pot as they come, but if they are going to legalize it, why wouldn't they make it legal to grow your own? (Rhetorical- I know the answer… same reason "they" are legalizing it… tax money)"
"This is what I am screaming. For them it's only about money."
"They are waiting for the rich to install a profit making infrastructure before they let us peasants enjoy anything."Giphy
"If I had any good reason it's because idiots insist it's not addictive and it doesn't impede your senses. So they drive and do dangerous sh*t while high."
"My issue isn't the severity of the impediment. It's that people refuse to admit that it does alter the mind."
"I already have one person insist they smoke weed and drive because they know their body."
"Now imagine if someone openly said that about alcohol and how you'd react. It's a really dumb mentality to have."
"If anything I'd push for it to be illegalized ALONG WITH alcohol and cigarettes."
"But prohibition taught us that is not the way to go."Giphy
The Same Path As Alcohol
"I believe that if it was legalized, it would become a much bigger part in society, much like how alcohol is now."
"I do have a problem with public drinking and personally view alcohol as much worse compared to marijuana."
"However, since drinking is already so ingrained in our society, it's not like we can get rid of it. I'm just hoping that weed doesn't follow in the same path as alcohol."Giphy
"Im so sick of all these CBD oil pyramid schemes popping up!"
"The testimonials are all, 'I broke my spine in half and had to get it surgically fused together. Now all I have to do is rub a drop of CBD on it, and the pain is gone!' "
"And I'm not against it, I actually use high grade CBD at night to help me sleep. I fucking hate going through a rep though, they always try to hard sell me on topical CBD for my back pain that's like $80 for a little jar, or $30 bath bombs."
"I have discs squeezing out of my spine, I'm pretty sure a dab of hemp oil is gonna do jack shit for that."
"And the cancer patient abuse!"
"Smoking or ingesting edibles with THC for pain management and appetite is super helpful for cancer patients, but cbd wont do anything. Not to mention getting an ounce of good weed wont set you back much, but getting a tiny vial of cbd can set you back a couple hundred bucks."
"With our healthcare system in the states, we know damn well cancer patients are already in a hole of debt. I'm worried legalizing will encourage these CBD lies."
"It's the new snake oil."
"My MIL is that person. She's was touting its Indica strains ability to outright cure cancer the last I saw her."
"Cancer patients get hit very hard with the cannabis oil scams. What kind of evil sh*t do you need to be to take advantage of desperate people?"
"I agree with you about people thinking its the grand cure all, but that's why I feel we SHOULD legalize."
"The main reason I want it legalize is so they can do more research on the things it does help. It's effect on tremors alone is fascinating."Giphy
So what have we really learned here? I'm not really certain.
Lots of people's reasons seemed under-informed, but just as many people had legitimate concerns.
Sure, those concerns could just as easily be applied to alcohol, but lots of Redditors admitted that and seemed to take LARGER issue with alcohol than cannabis. It was honestly difficult to find anyone (aside from the smell people) who was 100% against it.
And that, dear reader, is possibly the biggest takeaway from this. Attitudes are changing.
Sorry, D.A.R.E.—looks like we said yes to drugs. Well, cannabis at least.
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Chosen family is family. Sometimes they are the closest and most important family. Just because you share blood with someone, doesn't mean you have to form a bond.
That's why best friends are so important.
BFFs are forged in many ways. They're there for you in triumph and sorrow. They hold your hand. T
They know where the bodies are buried because they helped bury them. That's why it's so heartbreaking to lose them.
It's just a bitter pill to swallow when it's a relationship you thought was going to be endless.
Redditor FindingDale wanted to hear all the reasons why sometimes we just have to say goodbye to certain people in life, by asking:
How did you lose your best friend?
I've lost a few besties. Some through death. Some through personal growth and some just because it was time. That was an important lesson. Just like lovers, friends also outgrow one another.
I'm ExhaustedI Cant Modern Family GIF by HULUGiphy
"I got tired of it being all about her all of the time. I couldn't tell her anything in my life good or bad because she would make it about herself." ~ Wide-Fig-1063
"He was the passenger in a single-car accident. The driver was drunk, showing off, and drifting on an unfamiliar dirt road in California. They found the car at the bottom of a 70-foot cliff. Everyone in the car walked away except my friend, who died instantly."
"He was already passed out drunk himself so he likely didn't feel anything, but it was still such a terrible senseless way to go. That was 10 years ago last June. He was barely 21, the nicest guy you'd ever meet, and one hell of a bassist. Miss ya, Jake." ~ FormerLurker3
"Best friends since we were 12. Best Man at my wedding when we were 28. Day after the wedding he never spoke to me again. No explanation. Calls and texts went unanswered. He would avoid being at any social event I would be at, which was a few because we had the same circle of friends. Tried for two years to keep that friendship alive." ~ Tionek
"I had a weird dynamic to continue because of trauma. We had been friends for most of our lives (26 years) and every conversation was all about her. I was fine with that because she had a traumatic childhood and I knew she wasn't super socially with it. I'm happy to listen when my friends need it."
"Then she just unloaded on me saying I wasn't listening enough to her problems and how I had mistreated her by not asking enough pointed questions about abuse she had suffered as a kid. This was days after a three hour call where she did all the talking and it was mostly about her abuse."
"I was six months pregnant at the time and all I could think was "do I really have the bandwidth to take care of two babies?" I haven't spoken to her since." ~ keepinitcornmeal
It's WeirdFriends Tv GIFGiphy
"His wife tried to sleep with me. I didn't let it happen and I told him about it. They reconciled and had more kids, then it got weird whenever I was around so we drifted apart." ~ mycowild
Yeah, beware the partner of a loved one who is trying to trap you in a scandal. They are shady. Take that drama and run fast and far.
Why?Peering Looking GIF by MOODMANGiphy
"No idea. He slowly stopped answering calls, texts, emails... his wife, even more so. I'd occasionally stop by to see them and everything appeared to be OK. They never stopped to see us, even though his mother lived just a few miles away. I just quit trying." ~ NagromTrebloc
"It was October 16, 2015. I was working from home that day when I saw a call from him at around 9:15am. I had to ignore the call because I was in an online meeting. At 2pm my Dad calls my phone, which is unusual since he knows I'm working. I answer it."
"He is speaking quietly and very calmly. He says, "Son, I love you very much. I have some terrible news. Jared passed away this morning." Jared's wife was calling me from his phone to say she found him dead. I couldn't process what he was saying."
"I said, "That's not funny. Jared, his wife and me and my wife were supposed to meet up next weekend for dinner." Jared had sleep apnea surgery that same week. He had taken a painkiller and Benadryl together. It stopped his heart. He died 2 days before his 40th birthday. We were friends since grade school."
"We did everything together, he was my brother. He was the best man at my wedding earlier that year. I had just shared my son's heartbeat with him via a text message 2 days before. Jared was so excited to be his crazy uncle. I miss him every single day." ~ SnooCapers1425
"Codependency. I became basically obsessed with her and it just became too toxic. I had to cut it off because it was eating me up inside and she didn't deserve how I was treating her." ~ SuccessfulEggplant82
"Good on you for recognizing the problem you were having. It takes a lot (and I mean a crap ton) for an individual to come to this realization. Most people like to live in denial or fight it. I did the same thing and by the time I realized it, it was to late. I hope your able to get through it." ~ Nakanon85
"I noticed that he never came to my place to catch up. I stopped going over to his place to see how long until he noticed.... It's been 5 years now 🤷♂️." ~ Mr_Nonesuch
"Over the years I have observed in number of friendships that its always me that makes the call. They always are delighted to hear from me. If I organise something they come. They just don't make the effort. I have been best man five times so I don't think that its because the friendships are not valued. I don't know, am I missing something?" ~ Yarray2
"My ex wife. Even after we split we stayed close, co-parenting, helping each other out. She died 3.5 years ago. I could have made peace I think but after her death and our daughter was living with me full time I found out about how abusive my ex had been to her when I was around and it felt like losing her all over."
"Like I thought I knew who she was in the 13 years we'd had both together and separated, but it turns out I knew nothing. Now I'm just angry about it, like how dare you get to do this crap and then leave me to clean up your mess."
"How dare you have peace when my daughter has nothing but struggles and therapy. I felt like we were robbed of the good person, the good mother I thought she was." ~ Scarecrowqueen
Far Far Away...Jake Gyllenhaal Reaction GIF by MOODMANGiphy
"Friend moved to the other side of the planet, with their spouse, to be nearer to both their families. I never understood what real friendship was before friend was in my life; and now they're alive, but not here." ~ ClutchCrgo
One of the natural parts of life... saying goodbye. Or in some cases getting ghosted and forgotten. Either way, chin up.
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Humans have had an undeniably significant impact on our environment and the other species that inhabit the planet with us.
What might happen if humans weren't here to exert that influence, though?
What if we never had?
Reddit user Mompkey asked:
"Which species do you think would be dominant if humans didn't exist?"
"Wolves. They can, and have, successfully adapted to most of the various biomes on the planet."
"There's a reason we domesticated them and took them everywhere with us."Giphy
- Everything is garbage
- Garbage is delicious"
"I would agree, but now I'm wondering if our presence is the reason cockroaches have thrived as well as they have."Giphy
"Sharks, they are the dominant species on 3/4 of the Earth's surface already, they have survived mass extinctions and would thrive even more without humans mucking up their habitat."Giphy
"Humans are the only species that seek to dominate others. Other animals just want to live in the balance of nature. They're just trying to survive, they don't have time to take over the world."
"Pinky and The Brain theme song played in my head."Giphy
"We've killed off so many throughout history but of the ones that remains intelligence and versatility would be the key factors. Their food supply and habitat would greatly increase in our absence so with this being said.........primates."
"We are simply the superior primate therefore we are the dominant species. That opposable thumb is a mf when you have a large brain."
"Wouldn't it be just another off shoot of humans like the Neanderthal or heidelbergensis?"Giphy
While we'll probably never know definitively which species would truly thrive without us around, it's still fun to speculate.
Do you have thoughts?
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